Monday, February 4, 2008

Prayer, Meditation, Confession, and Repentance

It seems like ages since I have posted in this blog. (That is because it has been ages since I posted in this blog.)

Back in October I started experimenting with what it takes to change. I feel that the Christian culture spits out too many easy answers when it comes to spiritual transformation, and I don't want to be a part of that. I was teaching through the Book of Colossians and dealing with the topic of spiritual transformation, and I wanted to make sure that the opinions that I offered had some substance to them. I didn't want to say, "This is what should be true based on what I read in the Bible," but rather "This is what is true for me based on what I have implemented in my life." The theory that I worked with was that spiritual transformation occured through spiritual disciplines and connection to the spiritual comunity. Specifically, I wanted to test the effectiveness of prayer, meditation on the Scriptures, and accountability on producing real change. Not coincidentally, I think that "accountability" is just a modern word for the ancient disciplines of confession and repentance (also huge parts of the messages that John the Baptist, Jesus, and the Apostles preached).

My theory worked. I was able to change something about myself--something that had been bothering me for a long time that I had not been able to change. After my last blog post, I found an accountability partner and decided that I was really going to change (repentance). Then, I met weekly with this guy to talk about how things were going (confession).

Its a shame that we are so hesitant to be vulnerable with the Christian community because repentance and confession are integral to spiritual transformation.

Now that I have a system in place for confession and repentance, I really want to grow in other areas of spiritual discipline as well. As I mature as a follower of Jesus, I would like to have a stronger prayer life. I don't know what it is about me, but it is a struggle to slow down and spend real time with God in prayer. I think my challenge for the next few months is to develop in this area.

On a side note, I hope to keep this site updated with my thoughts. I have a lot on my mind right now. However, before I get in to that I thought it would be helpful to include an update about my spiritual transformation theory.

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