Consider, briefly, the physical development of a person. At birth, an infant is entirely dependent upon an adult for sustenance. Babies look to their mothers for milk and a capable person must spoon feed their food. Slowly, overtime, this changes. The child is able to hold a bottle, a piece of food, and then a spoon. He does not prepare the food, but is able to eat it himself. Before long, the child can prepare aspects of his own meals, although an adult worked for the money to purchase the food. In time, as an adult, that one-time infant is capable of engaging a job, purchasing their food, preparing it, and eating it without assistance. He will of course do this in relationship with others (meals are best when they are shared), but he has the skills needed to make his own meals. What’s true in our physical development is also true in our spiritual development. Yes, an authentic follower of Christ will always maintain community and benefit from the ‘shared meals’ that community provides, but maturity in Christ means a person takes responsibility for their daily sustenance and fully embraces this responsibility and opportunity. If a person fails to do this, his or her spiritual development will be stunted and impoverished. When fully embraced, a person will grow spiritually strong and then be capable of bearing the responsibility and opportunity of bringing up the next generation, spiritually speaking. Hebrews speaks to this directly: “In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil. (Hebrews 5:12-14). Authentic followers of Christ have “trained themselves” by “constant use.” They are not independent from the body of Christ, but they have moved from dependence to interdependence, where they benefit greatly from the shared meals of church-life while daily engaging Scripture for their own moment-by-moment sustenance.
Spiritual Fitness Check
Training is aimless without clear goals. Spiritual Fitness checks make sure you’re training effectively and progressing toward your goals.
Signs You're Living It Out
Engages Scripture daily, or nearly daily, on one’s own
Has enough knowledge and insight into Scripture that they are able to cross reference other passages on their own as they read for depth of insight
Has a plan and works the plan for consistently reading from all genres of Scripture
Is able to teach others—from their own learnings—who are not yet self-feeders themselves
Spiritual Fitness Check
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This bible study gives a holistic look through Scripture at the Self-Feeding outcome. Engage thought provoking questions for individual reflection and then discuss them in your Life Group or Spiritual Running Partner relationships.
Honestly, the best thing to do to deepen in the outcome of Self-Feeding is just to jump right into the Bible itself. Pick one book and study it all the way through, choose a particular passage to look at in-depth, or perhaps... Read More
Much like a nutritionist might ask you to keep a list of the foods you eat, spend the next several weeks keeping a spiritual food diary. Each day, note what sources you consumed -- such as listening to sermons (in person or via podcasts), reading books (list titles), reading Scripture (list which passages),... Read More
The Bible’s truths will transform you, aligning you with the character and ways of Jesus as you encounter him in the Scriptures. This easy-to-understand book shows you how to study the Bible Rick Warren’s way. It gives you not just one, but twelve methods for exploring the riches of God’s Word.... Read More
Use this web resource to look up passages of Scripture in multiple translations, search for a Scriptural theme, dig into the meaning of a particular word or phrase in the original Greek or Hebrew, study concepts or biblical... Read More