Do you need a spiritual check up? As ministers of the gospel I find that we invest spiritual nourishment and resources into so many people and we often neglect our own spiritual health. If we are not careful we can leave ourselves depleted and drained spiritually. How do I know if I need a spiritual check up?
Meditate upon these questions and know they are not meant to drive you to despair, rather they are meant to direct you to God. God has wired me to be dependent upon Him. We will never arrive at some sacred status where we are not in need of dependence upon God. We will always need God and we will always be growing in the grace of God and His gospel. Here are Ten Questions to Diagnose Your Spiritual Health [adapted from Donald Whitney’s book]:
1. Do you thirst for God? [Psalm 42:1-2] What do you run to instead of God to fill your longings? How can you grow in hunger and thirst for God? [Psalm 34:8]
2. Are you governed increasingly by God’s Word? Do you love God’s Word? Do you long to obey what God says? [Psalm 119] How can you foster love for God’s Word in your life? [Hebrews 4:12; 2 Timothy 3:16-17]
3. Are you more loving? [John 15:12, 17; Romans 12:10; Hebrews 10:24; 13:1]
Have you grown in love in the past years of your Christian life?
How would you like to grow in love in the next year?
4. Are you more sensitive to God’s presence? [Psalm 139:5-12; Jeremiah 23:24; Matthew 1:23; John 14:16-17] Describe how you listen for God’s gentle voice through His Word or in your spirit. [Genesis 28:16; Proverbs 15:3] How have you grown in sensitivity to God’s presence and work in your life?
5. Do you have a growing concern for the spiritual and temporal needs of others? Who (besides your family) is in your life right now that you are taking care of spiritually or physically? [Acts 4:33-34; Galatians 2:10; Mark 6:34-44]
6. Do you delight in the Bride of Christ? [Ephesians 5:25-27] Are you bitter or angry at Jesus’ church? How are you growing in love and delight for Jesus’ church? [1 Corinthians 3:16; 6:19; 2 Corinthians 6:16; Ephesians 2:22]
7. Are the spiritual disciplines increasingly important to you? How important do you see the spiritual disciplines as being in your life right now? [1 Timothy 4:7]
8. Do you still grieve over sin? [Matthew 5:4; Psalm 51] When is the last time that you were broken over your own sinfulness?
9. Are you quicker to forgive? Are you still quick to hold grudges? [Mark 11:25-26; Matthew 18:21-35] How do you need to grow in forgiveness? [Jeremiah 31:34]
10. Do you long for heaven and to be with Jesus? How often do you meditate on heaven and the promises that will be reality to us when we pass from this life to the next? Do you get excited about heaven? [2 Corinthians 5:2; Romans 8:22-23] What about heaven do you long for? How do you long to grow in what Paul is talking about in these verses?
1:19 for I know that through your prayers and the help given by the Spirit of Jesus Christ, what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance. 20 I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. 21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 22 If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! 23 I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far; 24 but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body. 25 Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, 26 so that through my being with you again your joy in Christ Jesus will overflow on account of me. – Philippians 1:19-26