What does it mean to be spiritual? Does a person with a strong spiritual life simply keep all the rules? And what’s the point of living in true spirituality anyway, when it seems like all you get for your sacrifices is some undefined goody-goody feeling? Today we’ll explore these questions and more, and learn what the world’s greatest teacher had to say on the subject.
Actions Speaking Louder
Many of us have had less than positive experiences growing up around Christian people. Even within the church, it’s all too common to see people talk about all kinds of good things, but then when we see how they live, the disparity is enormous. What good is it to talk about the right things one ought to do, and then go out and live completely the opposite? Seeing people living this way can make us jettison the whole idea of Christianity: who wants to follow a bunch of self-righteous hypocrites?!!
Not Based in Duty or Behavior
Jesus’ picture of spirituality, as contrasted with the heresy described in the previous paragraph, has nothing to do with activity. Rather, true spirituality is walking in a loving relationship with our Father God. You see, while we were sinners, alienated from our Creator because of our sin, God sent his son Jesus to come, live a perfect life, and die the death we deserved. When we respond to this truth and turn from our sin and to Christ as Lord, God grants us new life. Just as God saw our sin placed on Christ at the cross, He now sees Christ’s perfection in us. No longer are we estranged from our Creator – we are His sons and daughters!
Living in Response to What He Has Done
True spirituality, then, is living in response to this truth, to this great gift of salvation we have received. When we understand what Christ has done for us, we respond in the only way possible—by loving Him, loving what He loves, and desiring His will. How do we know what He loved? In the Scriptures we hear from God who He is, what He has done, and how He desires we live. Christ taught us that the first commandment is to love God above all else. The second commandment is to love our neighbors. On these two commandments hang all the teachings of the Law, and if you think about it, sole direction one needs to live as a blessing to those around him. Though living this way is not easy, and even as followers of Christ we often fall short and sin, this is the way to true spirituality and eternal life: accept the gift of salvation Christ offers, and devote your life to following Him with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength. He is gentle and humble of heart, and will lead you, protect you, and invite you into His heavenly kingdom.