Michael Phelps is one of the most decorated Olympic medalists of all time, regardless of his human foibles. Years ago, he released an advertisement for Under Armour. It shows various shots of him as an individual swimming alone at a pool, working out solitarily, eating, etc etc. At the end, it has the caption, “It is what you do in the dark that puts you in the light.”

Sometimes, when we hear the words “spiritual disciplines,” we equate it conceptually with legalism. However, I think the caption from the advertisement is a more appropriate summation of the role of spiritual disciplines. Are our lives without love? Without peace? Without strength? Perhaps it is because we have been neglecting these elements. What we do behind closed doors is what “puts us in the light” spiritually. It goes without saying that modern life pulls us in so many directions and provides so many distractions. Spiritual disciplines provide an opportunity to reorient our lives around the things, and the ONE that matters.

On Sunday, Pastor Mark talked in depth about one of those disciplines: Bible study. This particular “element” helps us reorient in a daily way. If the idea of daily Bible study is new to you, then I want to encourage you to start with small goals. I teach piano students and with my beginners, I always focus on encouraging them to sit down at the piano every day to begin, rather than asking them to start with 30-minute practice sessions! It does so much more for them long-term than any short-term gains gotten by going too intense, too soon. 

Learning these elements of the Christian life is something of a spiritual adventure that never ends. So don’t forget to join us the next couple of Sundays as we explore more!

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