Oh how I wish these spiritual growth secrets weren’t so “secret”. Sometimes my heart breaks for new Christians who is just learning what it means to follow Christ and grow spiritually. There are so many areas of our lives where we can just google a list of suggestions, steps, or tips and check things off as we go. But spiritual growth is so much deeper and more nuanced than that. Everything about our relationship with Christ and sanctification (the process of looking more and more like Jesus) is more than surface level and deeper than a checklist. Jesus is always after our heart, pursuing us, healing us, and restoring us. And spiritual growth in and of itself should be about looking more like Jesus and less like the hurt, trauma, and opinions of culture that we’ve embraced. Unfortunately, what it takes to see actual, tangible spiritual growth in your life isn’t always talked about, let alone emphasized on the internet. Allow me to help with that…
7 Spiritual Growth Secrets Nobody Talks About
1. You really do have to get in the Word for yourself to grow spiritually
- I know. Instagram and Pinterest and your favorite bloggers interpretation of scripture can seem much more entertaining. (especially when put in an entertaining video with good music, just being honest) But ultimately, for you and I to truly grow spiritually, we NEED to get in the Bible, read the Bible and study the Bible on a regular basis. There is no substitute.
- Thy word have I hid in my heart that I might not sin against you
I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.Psalm 119:11 NIV
2. Let God’s Word be the final authority in your life
Opinions are like noses. Everyone has one. However, if we are to truly flourish the way that God desires us to, His Word HAS to be the final authority. Not some bloggers who is trying to de-bunk scripture. The Bible, believe it or not, when you learn to read it in context, the bible will actually interpret itself.
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness2 Timothy 3:16 NIV
3. Spiritual growth will probably require you to do some unpopular things
- Some of the most beneficial spiritual practices are completely counter-cultural. Committed to giving 10% (tithe) to your local church? A financial guru might call you an idiot. Decided to save your body for the marriage bed? I can almost guarantee you’ll be mocked. Are you raising your kids to different standards than you neighbors? You might not be invited to all the local BBQs.
Speaking of spiritual growth secrets and kids… Read 5 Things My Kids Have Taught Me About Spiritual Growth
4. Loving God includes obeying His commands
Ouch. I know. That hurts a bit, but it’s true.
True love for God means obeying his commands, and his commands don’t weigh us down as heavy burdens.1 John 5:3 TPT
You and I cannot truly say that we love God while blatantly disobeying His commands.
There’s a popular undercurrent in modern “Christianity” that basically implies that of course, you love Jesus- even when you aren’t living according to His standards. And really, who wouldn’t ‘love’ a guy that was willing to die for them, right?
The problem lies in this: love- the true God kind of love demands action and God tells us clearly- “if you love me, obey my commands” (John 14:15 NLT)
5. Growth is often uncomfortable
- To be great in any arena, to grow, to get better requires discipline and sacrifice. These are two words that our human nature so desperately wants to shy away from. However, it is this very uncomfortable press that is required for us to really grow spiritually. Think about it, you didn’t get into the best shape of your life by sitting on the couch. You didn’t really dive into your passion project by simply going with the flow and doing what all your friends are doing. No, at some point, to grow in these natural areas, you had to do some hard things over and over and over again. Spiritual growth is often no different.
- Bonus- emotional healing is intricately tied to our spritual growth. Jesus came to seek and save all that was lost. To redeem ALL of you.
6. Spiritual growth secret: it takes time.
- I wish I could say that all your bad habits and dumb ways of thinking will automatically disappear the second you make Jesus the Lord of your life, but they won’t. Some of them will, but probably not all of them.
- That’s why Romans 12:1 tells us to be transformed by the renewing of their mind.
Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.Romans 12:2 NLT
7. There will be things that were okay for you 5 years ago that are not okay for you today.
- The Bible really is crystal clear about a lot of things regarding our conduct as followers of Christ. But there are also a lot of other things that it is not really specific on. There’s no “thou shall only spend 45min per day on social media” 12th commandment. Much of the specific guidelines that we must use to govern our daily behavior are things that we must get straight from the Lord.
- There are things that I had no check in my spirit, no guilt, no nothing over doing. (They were not in direct conflict with scripture) but now, as I have grown, I am NOT okay with doing them. I have an instant check in my spirit.
The fact of the matter is this-while salvation is a free gift; it will cost you everything. When we accept Jesus as our Lord, our life is no longer ours. The spiritual growth we so long for may be on the other side of these rather unpopular truths. However, whatever the cost, whatever the sacrifice, Jesus is worth it.