Peace in a Pandemic: Developing Spiritual Disciplines
During tumultuous times it’s easy to become overwhelmed with information and feel unsure about the days that lie ahead. We know that this often can lead to worry, fear and anxiety.
But the Lord promises us in Isaiah 26:3, “You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind in stayed on You, because he trusts in you.” (KJV)
How do we keep our minds stayed on the Father and experience this unimaginable peace He’s promised during such turbulent times? Part of keeping our minds on the Lord begins with practicing spiritual discipline in our daily lives.
According to gotquestions.org, “Spiritual disciplines can be described as those behaviors that augment our spiritual growth and enable us to grow to spiritual maturity… The purpose of spiritual discipline is the development of our inner being, that which has been transformed by Christ at salvation (2 Corinthians 5:17).” When we take the time to develop and mature our inner being, we can begin to experience a transformation of our thoughts, feelings and character.
Here are 4 ways to start developing spiritual disciplines that will lead you to peace which surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:6-7).
Develop a Personal Prayer Practice
Prayer is simply communicating with God. There are many ways to pray to the Father whether it’s through petitions (Matt. 7:7-8), thanksgiving (Ps. 106:7), or praise (Ps. 118:19)
Use this helpful guide to help you start spending more time in prayer—from praying three minutes a day to 30 minutes a day over three weeks. This will be a great way to develop your prayer life and a great time to pray for others.
Develop a Bible Reading Practice
There are a ton of benefits to reading God’s Word. It reveals His will to us, it trains us in the way of righteousness, it encourages us, strengthens us and gives us faith to trust God. Sometimes it’s hard to know where exactly to start, but here’s a few resources that may help:
- Bible Gateway provides several reading plans to help you start reading the Bible.
- The Inductive Bible Study Method is a great way to unpack the truths in the Word of God. It includes three simple steps: Observation, Interpretation, and Application. You can visit this website to learn more about how to read the bible inductively.
- Check out our bible study series on Biblical Literacy or any other sermon and review the scriptures shared.
Develop a Fasting Practice
Fasting takes discipline but brings with it a lot of rewards. Fasting is abstaining from some form of food and drink in order to focus our thoughts on God.
Although fasting requires discipline, it doesn’t have to be hard. If you’re just starting out, plan to fast for breakfast and/or lunch one time each week and pray to God for some specific areas of growth and/or breakthrough in your life and relationships. Cru.org provides an article on How to Do a Biblical Fast.
Practice Biblical Memorization/Meditation
Meditation is how we take Bible Reading and Study and make it applicable to our everyday lives. Meditation means to ponder or think about the Word of God, speak it to ourselves, and practice application in our lives. It helps us take every thought captive and bring it into submission to Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5). Here are some resources to help you begin the spiritual practice of meditation:
- Read this article on why it is important to memorize Scripture and discover some tangible ways to do it
- Use a tool like The Bible Memory App to help you easily practice meditation in your daily life. You can download the app on both Apple and Android.
- Check out 5 Steps to Meditation on Your Bible for more help in why and how to practice biblical meditation.
- Visit this devotional which encourages biblical meditation.
Developing spiritual discipline takes time and is a lifelong practice. You’re not going to be perfect in your practice, but with time you will begin to see the fruits of the Spirit manifesting in your life by the power of the Holy Spirit working in us as we work out our own salvation. And when life does hit, like these present times, we’ll experience the fruit of maturity that will keep us, sustain us and help us overcome in Christ.