Our last discussion offered the overview of our whole-person makeover series to launch your new year with habits you can sustain forever. We noted the importance of taking small, maintainable steps toward the lifestyle which blesses the rest of your days. The significance of addressing all areas of our well being also took center stage in the last post.
Today’s video begins the practical means toward actualizing your best life. The foundational element of abundant living lies within the one part of our being which outlives the rest. Spirituality pervades all other pieces of our essence and experience. All hope of success in our cognitive, emotional, physical, vocational, and relational aspects of life hinges upon spiritual well being.
Scripture indicates every life builds its well being on some kind of spiritual foundation.
As for everyone who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice, I will show you what they are like. They are like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built. But the one who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. The moment the torrent struck that house, it collapsed and its destruction was complete.” Luke 6:47-49, NIV
All of us believe something, worship a centrally significant concept. Few of us acknowledge what we’ve actually set as the basis of our hope, priority for our time and resources, or fulcrum of our well being. One choice, one attitude shift, one declaration at a time, we build a life. We decide how and who we become based upon what we deem vitally important. Regardless of the “religion” we claim as our identifying group, our true faith lies underfoot, as we live and walk upon it every day. We can ask ourselves the following questions to discern what we’ve actually built our spiritual lives upon:
- Where does your conscious threshold lead? What occupies your first and last thoughts of each day?
- To whom or what do you first turn for comfort, reassurance, and security when you’re upset or stressed?
- Who or what has the power to determine whether you’re devastated or generally okay? Who or what can shatter your life altogether?
- How do you make decisions? Which factors play the biggest role in guiding your choices?
- What or whom defines you?
- How do you evaluate your success or failure as a human being?
- Do you compare yourself to other people?
- What factors do you consider when choosing whether to engage in relationships with other people?
- How do you decide where you will live, work, or spend time and money?
I could add more questions, but the important litmus test in identifying what we truly worship rests in knowing what we trust to anchor our well being. Many who define themselves by a specific religion or atheism actually practice faith in money, career, health, or marital status, for example. Those who’ve sincerely committed their lives to Christ won’t lose their salvation status while inadvertently acting out of faith in something else. Yet all who build well being upon less stable foundations suffer the consequences of an unsteady, fragile lifestyle. Anything other than Jesus cannot sustain us through the inevitable storms we’ll face.
Today’s video offers the following tips toward centering your spiritual well being with healthy, sustainable habits you can maintain forever:
- Read and pray through at least one verse each day.
- Pray before you start each day.
- Reflect your thoughts, emotions, decisions, and attitudes to God throughout the day.
- Refuse to hold anything back from your ultimate Healer.
- Always have at least one person (preferably a fellowship of believers) with whom you can pray and grow in spiritual health.
- Learn something new about or grow in an area of faith every season of every year. Choose a book or study group.
- Share what you learn with someone else, praying for guidance and a grace-filled heart as you do so.
- Ask God to help you love Him more every day and love others better every week.
- Give something of yourself to the Lord by sharing with someone He puts in front of you.
- Pray as you end each day.
- Listen during your prayers.
- Ask Jesus to join you at meals, whether you’re eating alone or not. He’s already there, but recognizing his presence changes your perspective and draws you closer to him.
- Ask the Lord every season how you can grow more into his image. Listen and watch for his response.
- Replace any areas in the question list above with centeredness on Christ. One. Thing. At. A. Time.
- Praise God whether you feel like it or not. Especially when you don’t feel grateful, in fact. Praise the Lord until you feel thankful, not just after you already feel thankful.
- Take time to walk with God in nature once a season at the very least. Listen. Be present with him.
What small steps will you make to anchor your spiritual foundation today? This month? This year? I’d love to hear your feedback and suggestions! Next week, we’ll take another step toward optimizing your life with sustainable habits.