Spiritual Growth: Measures for How Youre Doing

In my yard are quarter-circles of grass growing taller than the rest. There 's also a 12-foot circle with no grass. What explains these phenomena? Alien laser blasts? A Martian landing site? No. The arcs are where we threw lawn fertilizer, and the circle is where the above-ground pool stood. Whether growth is fast, slow, or non-existent, the difference is easy to discern.

Paul tells his opponents to stop using worldly yardsticks instead of God's (2 Cor. 10:12). By a worldling's measure, Paul seemed a failure, but in God's eyes he was a glorious conqueror. By what standards should we measure spiritual progress?

  • Spiritual diet: meat vs. milk (1 Cor. 3:1-2). Am I learning more of God's Word, going broader and deeper than ever before? Or am I just rehashing what I've known for years, or worse yet, not reading and studying at all?

  • Spiritual model: Jesus Christ (Eph. 4:13). We measure our growth not by comparing ourselves with others, but with Christ. My life is guided not just by WWJD (what would Jesus do?), but also by WWJT (think) and WWJB (be). It is not just actions but also thoughts and motives that measure maturity.

  • Spiritual character: the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23). Am I growing in love, in joy, in peace, in patience, in kindness, in goodness, in faithfulness, in gentleness, and in self-control? It's like a cluster of grapes: each matures on its own--patience may be green while joy is ripe. Yet they all mature together.

  • Spiritual offspring: those you teach (Heb. 5:12). The ability to instruct others in the faith is a mark of maturity. The immature cannot reproduce. How are you doing at being able to share the gospel with someone else? God blesses the heart that is devoted to Him. Will you settle for no-growth or slow-growth by devoting yourself to worldly pursuits or giving the Lord half-hearted effort? Or will you put your heart and soul into maturing in Christ? Either way, the difference will soon be evident.

    Copyright ©2005 Steve Singleton, All rights reserved.

    Steve Singleton has written and edited several books and numerous articles on subjects of interest to Bible students. He has taught Greek, Bible, and religious studies courses Bible college, university, and adult education programs. He has taught seminars and workshops in 11 states and the Caribbean.

    Go to his DeeperStudy.com for Bible study resources, no matter what your level of expertise. Explore "The Shallows," plumb "The Depths," or use the well-organized "Study Links" for original sources in English translation. Sign up for Steve's free "DeeperStudy Newsletter."

    In The News:

    This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news

    Publishers Weekly

    Religion and Spirituality Books Preview: May 2018
    Publishers Weekly
    Storm offers an off-the-bus travel guide to the Holy Land with a spiritual dimension to the people and places. Birthing Hope: Giving Fear to the Light by Rachel Marie Stone (InterVarsity, $16, ISBN: 978-0-8308-4533-0). Stone reflects on how childbirth ...


    Psychology Today (blog)

    "Spiritual But Not Religious" Is Associated With Depression
    Psychology Today (blog)
    Religious belief and practice is connected with greater resilience for those who enjoy faith and an attachment to god. For example, a national study of veteran's health highlighted significant protective effects of religion and spirituality (Sharma et ...


    The Japan Times

    'Ay Tjoe Christine: Spirituality and Allegory'
    The Japan Times
    April 28-Aug. 19. As a student, Indonesian artist Ay Tjoe Christine studied various art techniques, including drypoint and intaglio printing, and began her career as a textile designer. Her paintings are based on Christian narratives and spiritual ...


    The Jerusalem Post

    Where spirituality meets luxury in Safed
    The Jerusalem Post
    THE WAY INN in Safed: 'We want it to be not just a hotel but a center for spirituality'. (photo credit: Courtesy). The Baal Shem Tov, the Jewish mystical rabbi considered the founder of hassidic Judaism, was never able to visit the land of Israel, but ...

    and more »

    89.3 WFPL

    Festival Of Faiths: Social Activist Ruby Sales On Civil Rights And Spirituality
    89.3 WFPL
    After being released from six days in jail for picketing a whites-only store in Alabama in 1965, a 17-year-old Ruby Sales experienced an event that played a pivotal role in who she would become. She and several others went to buy a soda, and were ...


    yorkregion.com

    Kathmandu — A city of temples and spirituality
    yorkregion.com
    Lines of fluttering coloured flags radiated from the gilded sceptre of the Swayambhunath down to the ground, where believers circled its whitewashed dome, running their fingers over carved wooden prayer wheels as a gentle chorus of Om Mane Padme Hum ...

    and more »

    Forbes

    The Spirituality Of Trading
    Forbes
    In this article, I will introduce the concept of trading spirituality and explain, with examples drawn from research and real-world practice, how transcending the ego can help us become both improved traders and better human beings. Understanding ...


    The New Yorker

    Jon Hopkins's Soundtrack for Spiritual Awakening | The New Yorker
    The New Yorker
    A decade ago, in the spring of 2008, Coldplay released an album with a grand title and a grander purpose. The title was “Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends.” The purpose was to transform Coldplay, which was just about the most popular band in ...

    and more »

    Daily Pioneer

    Rahul Gandhi questions Modi on 'spirituality in cleaning toilets'
    Daily Pioneer
    Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Monday questioned Prime Minister Narendra Modi on associating spirituality with cleaning of toilets and also took a jibe at him on frying of 'pakodas'. "The Prime Minister sees spirituality in cleaning of toilets and ...
    'Pakode banane me spirituality hoti hai', Rahul Gandhi's swipe at Narendra ModiFinancial Express
    Dalits May Die, Women May be Raped, Modiji is Only Interested in Becoming PM Again: Rahul GandhiNews18
    Modi's focus is on Modi, not people: RahulThe Telegraph India

    all 240 news articles »

    Pulse Nigeria

    Spirituality, Sex: Are demons making Christians watch porn?
    Pulse Nigeria
    Reportedly, Pope Francis has sanctioned a new training that focuses on how demons use porn. World Religion News reports that the church thinks there is a connection between Satan and pornography. The belief is that an avid porn addict is most likely ...

    Google News

  • 6 Little Prayers That Bring Healing - Every Time You Pray

    Ok, let's start with the amazing story of Robbie and... Read More

    Why Worry

    The possibility of almost 400 Old Testament prophesies coming to... Read More

    De-materialization #1

    Come on now!? Really? This is going too far, you... Read More

    Starved Spirits, Sorrowful Souls

    Give us today our daily bread. Matthew 6:11 (NIV) We... Read More

    Anam Cara - Life as a Box of Paints

    Lonely Song"a box of paints - lament for my da"It... Read More

    Improving Your Spiritual Life (for Christians)

    70% of people who send me feedback at http://www.insideoutmusic.net tell... Read More

    Looking Back With A Pained Expression

    Anyone who tells you that the path to self-actualization is... Read More

    Anamchara - Living The Real Life

    "Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy? Caught... Read More

    Terrorists Again - 14 Prayers to Protect Your Family

    In the last 2 weeks or so, I have been... Read More

    The Psychical Research Foundation

    Karen was the name of the reception person, who sat... Read More

    The Trouble With Tarot Reading

    Anything can be used for divination; coins, tea leaves, cards,... Read More

    GOD Loves Us All

    God, what a wonderful spirit. He, is our ever present... Read More

    New Every Morning

    I have almost died twice in my life. The first... Read More

    From Spiritual Cry Baby to Bold Seeker of Truth

    Ever notice how people dread discussing... Read More

    Let Go and Let God

    As a child growing up, whenever I was worried about... Read More

    African American Hiking for Spiritual Health

    Hiking is gaining popularity within the African-American community. We're beginning... Read More

    Letting Go of Your Past

    Once you become saved and born again, the Bible tells... Read More

    Good News from Mars (Part 1)

    Those of us, who are familiar with Apostle Paul's sermon... Read More

    A Beautiful Mind is a Simple Mind!!

    In the movie "A Beautiful Mind" John Nash (played by... Read More

    The CAB Approach to Spiritual Growth

    I have been thinking a lot about the spiritual growth... Read More

    Universal Meaning of Celtic Knotwork

    In the spring of 2003, I spent three weeks in... Read More

    Games to Play With Tarot Cards

    The lighter side of Tarot deals with games played using... Read More

    Unconditional Love Really Means Unconditional Radiance

    The fastest way to raise your frequency is to do... Read More

    7 Wake-Up Calls-Avoid Self Sabotage to Discover Wealth and Prosperity with the Angels of Abundance

    It's an almost unbelievable thought, but could you be getting... Read More

    Importance and Necessity of Special Revelation - Part One

    This article is a reply that deals with certain criticisms... Read More