Wednesday, March 2, 2022

Spiritual growth in an efficiency-focused world

Currently, there is a lot of focus on improving productivity and efficiency. There is an endless race for transformation that will increase efficiency and maximize profits. Digital and customer experience is an essential factor, and a lot of money is spent on it. As new technologies bring improvements in many areas of life, it has resulted in a continuous flow of information and engagement. It has resulted in information overload and has made people busier and hurried in general. There is a lot of stress and anxiety, resulting in strained family relations and complacency in spiritual life.


"Complacency is easy, and it is a deadly foe of spiritual growth." - A. W. Tozer


Many try to apply efficiency principles to spiritual growth, and it has not worked the way people expected. In general, shortcuts taken to bring spiritual growth have not yielded desired results, which has resulted in many people not pursuing personal spiritual growth as an essential matter. Lack of character transformation is no more seen as a serious issue. When moral and ethical standards mentioned in the Bible are violated or ignored, nowadays, we see a growing tendency to move on with no regret, thought, or action.   


At times people hide under what they do for God to cover the failure to become what God desires from them. According to Dallas Willard, "The most important thing in your life is not what you do; it's who you become. That's what you will take into eternity." We can be so busy for God that we do not have time to spend with Jesus and allow the Holy Spirit to transform us. Have we reached a point in our spiritual life where we have quietly said to ourselves that, "I am like this, and I will remain like this? I do not think God can transform me internally."  

Paul talks about a Christian becoming mature in the Lord and measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ (Eph. 4:13). Are we willing to pursue spiritual disciplines in our life which will help us become more like Christ?


We should not neglect our daily devotion time of prayer and Bible reading. We should not form a habit of neglecting our devotions by thinking that we will do once we are done with all the other pressing needs of daily life. We must give it a top priority and have a set time and place for it. We should look at adding spiritual disciplines that will help us grow in our devotional life and challenge us to be intentional with our activities.


When it comes to our spiritual life, we must be intentional that we do not become a Consumer Christian. 

"Consumer Christianity is now normative. The consumer Christian is one who utilizes the grace of God for forgiveness and the services of the church for special occasions, but does not give his or her life and innermost thoughts, feelings, and intentions over to the kingdom of the heavens. Such Christians are not inwardly transformed and not committed to it." - Dallas Willard.


A statement from John Ortberg has challenged me a lot. He says that "Spiritual growth doesn't mean a life of doing what I should do instead of what I want to do. It means coming to want to do what I should do." Are we committed to genuine spiritual growth, which will transform our character in this efficiency-focused world? If we invest time, we will reap rewards that will last for eternity.


Be Alert: Do not fall into this trap!

Introduction Recently, a Pastor visited me, and I took him to the Mall of America, the biggest mall in America.  As we were walking, we met ...