Practical Aids in Deepening Spiritual Life

In today’s text (Eph 2:1-7), the Apostle Paul lets us know that we were once dead in sin, but that God made us alive with Christ.  And the question I want to ask those of you who profess life in Christ: what are some of the signs in your life that show that you are in fact alive?

Would it be fair to say that life with Christ involves regular communication with Him?  In short, do you pray and set aside time to regularly hear from God from His Word?  Do you make it a point to be in God’s house, to experience the spiritual gifts (teaching, helping, administrating, etc.) that He has given to other members of His body, that He hasn’t perhaps given to you?  Do we show signs of life when we say that we don’t need others in the body, the church?  The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you” (1 Cor 12:21).

If you are already practicing those disciplines that reflect your life in Christ (regular prayer, Bible reading, and church attendance) and would like something in addition, might I recommend some solid Christian book reading to help shepherd your soul throughout the week?  I am regularly nourished by my Bible reading, prayer, and being with all of you in worship, but my horizons have been greatly expanded to see signs of life among the saints in other times and in other places.  Here are some books I have been greatly helped by:

–          Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis

–          How Should We Then Live, Francis Schaeffer

–          The Cost of Discipleship, Dietrich Bonhoeffer

–          The Gospel According to Jesus, John MacArthur

–          The Holiness of God, R.C. Sproul

–          The Story of Christianity, Justo Gonzalez (Church History)

–          What Does God Want of Us Anyway, Mark Dever

–          Don’t Waste Your Life, John Piper

–          Keeping the Heart, John Flavel

–          Morning and Evening, Charles Spurgeon (Devotional)