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So You Want to be Like Christ (Spiritual Disciplines) by Charles Swindoll

I read this book and it really helped me understand some of the disciplines that are foundational for spiritual growth. I created a table which compares and contrast the disciplines versus what the world is offering. I have also added some quotes from the book and other sources. I hope this will help us all grow in Christ.

Disciplines of the Christian Life

So you want to be like Christ by Charles Swindoll (on the left)

So you want to be like the world by Scott Williams (on the right)

1. Intimacy: Deepening our lives

1. Distance: Live shallow lives

2. Simplicity: Uncluttering our minds

2. Complicate: Make your life more difficult or add more things to do in life

3. Silence and Solitude: Slowing our pace

3. Noise and Busyness: Be on the go and never slow down, have the TV or radio always on

4. Surrender: Releasing our grip

4. Control: I will do it my way

5. Prayer: Calling out

5. Independence: I don’t need any help

6. Humility: Bowing low

6. Pride: Rising up high

7. Self-control: Holding back

7. Lack of self-control: do what you want

8. Sacrifice: Giving over

8. Selfish: It is all about me

“Distance from God is a frightening thing. God will never adjust His agenda to fit ours. He will not speed His pace to catch up with ours; we need to slow our pace in order to recover our walk with Him.” (page 9)

“Superficiality is the curse of our age. The doctrine of instant satisfaction is a primary spiritual problem. The desperate need today is not for a greater number of intelligent people, or gifted people, but for deep people.”(Richard Foster Celebration of Discipline)

“Notice that the first four disciplines have to do with getting rid of something, creating room in your life. The next four contribute vitality and authenticity to your spiritual life.”

(page 22)

IDOLATRY — the worship of something created as opposed to the worship of the Creator Himself. Scores of references to idolatry appear in the Old Testament. This shows that idolatry probably was the greatest temptation our spiritual forefathers faced.

WORSHIP — reverent devotion and allegiance pledged to God; the rituals or ceremonies by which this reverence is expressed. The English word “worship” comes from the Old English word “worthship,” a word that denotes the worthiness of the one receiving the special honor or devotion.

37 Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” (Matthew 22:37-40)

7 But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. 8 What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ (Philippians 3:7-8)

1. “The simplicity which is in Christ is rarely found among us. In its stead are programs, methods, organizations, and a world of nervous activity which occupy time and attention, but can never satisfy the longing of the heart.” ( Tozer: The Pursuit of God, page 17)

2. “If we would find God amid all the religious externals, we must first determine to find Him, and then proceed in the way of simplicity.” (Tozer: page 18)

3. “The evil habit of seeking God-and effectively prevents us from finding God in full revelation.” (Tozer: page 18)

4. “We become a child of God through faith, we become a disciple through sacrifice, but we become mature through time.” (Andy Stanley)

7 Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.

(Galatians 6:7)

5. It is doubtful whether God can bless a man greatly until He has hurt him deeply. The Root of the Righteous, (Tozer)

6. You should expect spiritual warfare to increase as you start to develop your quiet time.

Spiritual growth is a process (months and years, never ending) not an event.

7. "There is a choice you have to make in everything you do. So keep in mind, that in the end, the choice you make, makes you." (John Maxwell)

8. Remember: It's not what you have, it's what you do with what you have that makes all the difference.

9. Life can only be understood by looking backward, but it must be lived by looking forward.

10. We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.

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Comment by Don Loops on November 2, 2014 at 4:15pm

Thanks for the insights. How can we know so much and still sin so much? I highly recommend this series of lectures:

http://open.biola.edu/collections/spiritual-formation-lecture-series

Comment by Karl Porta on November 14, 2010 at 4:35pm
Loved the Chart and comments and quotes. I believe it was Tozer who coined the phrase "self-life." Isnt it amazing how pride permeates our Christian "culture?" Andy's quote on maturity is a key factor in eradication wouldnt you agree? So as we respond in "microwave mentality," how long DOES it take?

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