Jesus followers step into their true and renewed identity as a uniquely created child of God. Throughout the history of the Christian faith, a number of classic disciplines have been indispensible as foundational pieces to get us there:
Silence Spend five to ten minutes each day in silence. Carve out a time that is free from interruption and use this time to be silent. While letting silence and its peace wash over you, pray without words. Very close friends can communicate without words; try this with God. Simply enjoy God’s presence as He wraps His loving arms around you.
Solitude Work into your schedule periods of intentional solitude with Jesus. It could be the 5 minutes before a meeting, on the walk to the bus, a 2 hour walk in the forest, or a day at a retreat centre. Ironically, one of the defining marks of our society is that hates to be alone is loneliness. However, Jesus calls us out of loneliness into Solitude. Push yourself through common distractions or excuses and carve out more time then you would comfortably schedule.
Fast When we fast, we are saying no to the uncontrolled appetites of our body and thereby gaining mastery over them. It will also reveal hidden traits such as anger, selfishness, inability to delay gratification, laziness etc.
Try a 24-hour partial fast Jesus fasted in the wilderness to gain spiritual strength. A simple way to begin is to fast from lunch to lunch or dinner to dinner. During the 24-hour period, drink plenty of water, and at mealtimes, drink a glass of fruit juice. Remember, in the fasting you are ‘feasting’ upon God
Try fasting from Media for one day or one week. This would include: no internet surfing, television, Netflix or movies. Be intentional about how you use the regained time.
Confession Private confession to Jesus is wonderful, and so is the confession of sin to a brother or sister in Christ. Corporate confession will take us out of the darkness and into the light of Jesus. Take a sin that has been reoccurring and confess it to a mature believer. Watch the fear and pride that clings to us like barnacles wash away as Jesus brings his healing power.
Keep the Sabbath “Remember the Sabbath day, and keep it holy” is one of the most neglected of the Ten Commandments. The Sabbath is actually God’s gift to a frazzled world. Sit down with your family and discuss how you can set one day aside for rest and recreation. Resist the urge to accomplish tasks and simply rest in God.