Spiritual Formation

Topics: Meaning of life, Spirituality, Supernatural Pages: 9 (3551 words) Published: February 23, 2014


Hope International University
Graduate Ministry Program
Capstone Essay, Week 5
Submitted to Rick Stedman
In Partial Fulfillment of
BIB3707 Spiritual Formation
By
Burt Bun
10-27-2013

When it comes to spiritual formation it is clear that there are several perspectives we must consider in order to understand how to develop ourselves inwardly on a spiritual level. The different perspectives help us to grow and understand ourselves as well as to establish a deeper meaning to life and our purpose in life here on this Earth. We can only grow in our understanding when we utilize the tools that God and man have provided to us and for us to continually grow and work towards a deeper understanding of our own spiritual formation. From a biblical perspective there are several things that we can learn to help us understand our own spiritual formation. These lessons rely heavily on the principles and lessons taught and learned in the Bible itself. Those teachings and lessons can help us from a biblical perspective prioritize what is truly important in life and to make time to develop ourselves inwardly based on those principles. When we use the Bible as a foundation for our spiritual formation we can use the rest of the tools given to us to develop ourselves inwardly appropriately focusing primarily on the standards set by the example of Christ and what is truly important on a spiritual level. They can help us focus more on what is important to God and of his standard than what is important to man and the standards set by the world and society. When we focus on the historical perspective of the development of spiritual formation it is all about learning from the people that have come before us, from their experience, and from the lessons learned from their experience. It is so we are not destined to repeat our mistakes and focus our energy and time wastefully having to experience for ourselves lessons that have already been learned and taught by man and for man. There are plenty of people, educated and not, that we can learn quite a bit from based on their own personal experience and education as well as the knowledge they have learned based on their experience and from an education in which they were taught. When it comes to a practical perspective there is always much to learn in the way of spiritual formation. All the knowledge in the world from other people and from educational institutions can be a wonderful thing. But how wonderful is it truly if it cannot be applied? I believe that without practical application it is truly worthless. Being able to apply what we learn affectively in our own lives is what it is all about. It is only with practical application that we can make a difference in our lives and in the lives of others. It would be very hard to grow inwardly if we could not see the tangible results outwardly of our own spiritual growth and actions associated with that growth. I believe some of my personal challenges of growing spiritually come in the form of being close minded when it comes to accepting and learning from “experts“ who I feel have no idea what it is like to walk a mile in my shoes. I feel some people appear to know so much would in fact they know so little. Also I personally found it difficult with learning from these “experts” to make what they are trying to teach me practical and applicable in my life in the way of action. When it comes to the spiritual disciplines themselves I found that the ones I struggled with the most were perhaps the ones that I can learn the most from. These included the spiritual disciplines of prayer, meditation, submission, silence, guidance and celebration. Some of the spiritual disciplines I had already been practicing in my life and they had already made a difference in my personal spiritual growth. These included service, worship, simplicity and study. Although these disciplines came easier to me the difficult task was incorporating the other...
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