Devotional for Thursday January 25th

Good Morning Everyone,


Our theme for this month: “Balance”


Our Bible verse for today: “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 2 Corinthians 4:16 (NIV)


Our thought for today: “Seek spiritual formation.”


Yesterday I introduced you to Joel Warne’s great little book “The Intimate Journey: God in the daily adventure”. I met Joel in 2004 at a conference in Los Angeles sponsored by the Renovere Institute for Spiritual Formation. As I mentioned in a previous devotional this month, a primary theme at that conference was the concept of “Christian Wholeness”, or becoming a person who is healthy and balanced in all the important ways.


But the primary mission of the Renovere Institute is the promotion of the practice of spiritual formation. The Holy Spirit is always in the process of “forming” us spiritually. That’s what Paul wrote about in 2 Corinthians 4:16 – inwardly we are being renewed and transformed day by day. That’s spiritual formation taking place and it’s the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives which brings about that spiritual formation in us.


As spiritual formation takes place our faith becomes stronger and it becomes the dominate influence in our lives. As I noted yesterday, ideally, as we grow in our relationship with Christ rather than our relationship with Him just being a piece of our lives that is in competition with the other pieces, it becomes the thread that is woven all throughout our lives and which draws all the other pieces together. Our faith in Christ becomes the integrating factor that permeates every aspect of our life, it draws all the pieces of life together into a unified whole, and creates a life which is ruled over by Christ.


That’s what spiritual formation achieves and that is the subject of Joel’s book. He writes, “What if faith meant a transforming relationship with Someone who consistently breathed life and meaning into everything He touched? What if faith was a heart to Heart relationship with Someone who knew me deeply, accepted me totally, and had the power to increasingly restore my fragmented soul?… Such a permeating intimacy with God is the goal of spiritual formation.”


I want to stress again this morning that a healthy balance in life does not mean that our faith, and the practice of it, is one of the pieces that we need to find room for among all the other pieces of life. Instead our lives will be properly balanced when our faith in Christ becomes the unifying factor that permeates all of life, and which draws all the other elements of life into proper alignment around the throne of our heart where Christ sits and reigns.


I encourage you to be committed to the process of spiritual formation. Do the things everyday which place you in a position before God whereby He can bring about that inward transformation in you. Nothing you do will have a more positive impact on your life.


God Bless,

Pastor Jim

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