This is the third and final article in the series on building and maintaining a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually. In the first article I discussed what is a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually. In the second article I discussed 6 reasons why we need a strong burning desire to grow spiritually. In this article, I discuss 8 ways to build and maintain a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually.
1. Put God First
God deserves first place in our lives because of who he is and what he does for us. God is love and he loves us so much that he blesses us in many different ways. Yet, many people do not put God first, primarily because they do not really know him. When you put God first, you will get to know him better, strengthen your relationship with him, enjoy your life more, and your desire to grow spiritually will increase. Make it a habit to put God first and you will simultaneously build and maintain a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually. You can read more about putting God first by clicking here or reading my book, Enjoy Your Life to the Max: 31 Free or Inexpensive Things You Can Do. Remember, acknowledge God in all your ways and he shall direct your paths (Prov. 3:6).
2. Have at least one strong reason
To willingly achieve anything in life, we need to first desire it. To build and maintain a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually, you must have at least one strong reason for doing so. What is your reason for growing spiritually? If you are not sure, you can read (or read over) my previous article on 6 reasons why we need a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually and or think about it some more until you come up with your own reason.
3. Focus on the Benefits of Spiritual Growth
While you must have at least one strong reason to build and maintain a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually, focusing on some of the benefits of spiritual growth is also helpful. Spirituality influences our thoughts, words, and deeds, and the higher your level of spirituality, the better your life may be. Besides, God created us to grow physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. When we grow spiritually, we bear the fruit of the spirit, become more Christlike, and live more godly lives. “The fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control” (Gal. 5:22-23). Which of these are you most in need of?
4. Set Goals for Spiritual Growth
To build and maintain a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually, set goals for spiritual growth. Focus on the spiritual growth you want and the actions you will take to achieve it within the timeframe you set for yourself. For example, you can set goals to pray at least 3 times a day, read your Bible daily, attend church weekly, and have a special fellowship with other Christians monthly. You can set goals to become more loving, peaceful, and or better. When you set those goals and work to achieve them, you will build and maintain your strong, burning desire to grow spiritually, and you will grow spiritually.
5. Stay Spiritually Active
To achieve any goal in life, you have to work at it. To build and maintain a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually, one of the best things you can do is to stay spiritually active. Set your goals, but work on them daily. This is very important, because we are constantly faced with temptations which can rob us of the time and discipline required for spiritual growth. Have you ever set a goal and then forget about it? If you have, one of the reasons may be that you did not focus on that goal regularly. Schedule time to work on your spiritual goals every day. When you engage in spiritual practices daily, your desire for spiritual growth will increase and you will also grow spiritually.
6. Feed Your Soul Great Food
While it is important to stay spiritually active, you also need to feed your soul great food.”Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation” (1 Peter 2:2). You can feed your soul with the words you read, listen to, meditate upon and affirm. You can read something inspiring every day. The Bible has many inspirational stories such as that of Queen Esther, King David, and the life of Jesus. The Psalms and Proverbs are also great for daily reading. You can also listen to them on audiobooks, and read or listen to other Christian materials.
Listening to Christian music is wonderful. Some of the music is so touching that you may want to listen over and over like I do. Whenever I listen to wonderful Christian music, I feel closer to God and my desire to grow spiritually increases. I thank God and all those Christian musicians for their beautiful music.
You can select some words from the Christian books, songs, or sermons, and meditate on them. Ask yourself, what do these words really mean? How relevant are they for me and my life? Can I apply these words to my life? Can I use these words as affirmations or should I write and use my own? Will they help me build and maintain a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually? If so, use them.
7. Surround Yourself with Spiritual Reminders
Our environment, especially the things and people we surround ourselves with, often influence us more than we realize. Surrounding ourselves with Christian influences will greatly help us build and maintain a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually. You can use anything of a spiritual nature, including Christian books, Christian ornaments, and clothing such as Christian t-shirts. You can spend quality time with devout Christians, join online Christian groups, or a small group at your church. As you surround yourself with such Christian influences, you will also grow spiritually.
8. Pray for a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually
Last, but not least, to build and maintain a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually, you can ask God for help. When we pray, God hears and he answers. We can pray about anything at any time. Whenever you feel your desire to grow spiritually is waning, just pray and then engage in other spiritual practices of your choice including meditation, listening to a Christian audiobook, and dancing to Christian music. This will strengthen your desire to grow spiritually.
While the above are 8 ways you can build and maintain a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually, there are also other ways you can do so. What are some of the other ways you believe people can build and maintain a strong, burning desire to grow spiritually? I would love to hear from you. Please share in the comments section below.