The Biggest Question
How do I want to live so that I can be who I want to be?
What Works for You May Not Work for Me
In 1 Samuel 17 we find the scrawny shepherd David, eventual King of Israel, on the brink of fighting the Philistine giant and warlord Goliath who has been taunting the Israelites for 40 days. David wouldn’t stand for it. Saul, King of Israel, decided to let the little shepherd fight the giant when he saw David’s zeal for standing for God. He gave David his best armor and hoped for the best. In John Ortberg’s book, The Me I Want to Be, he points out that:
David wouldn’t stand for it. Saul, King of Israel, decided to let the little shepherd fight the giant when he saw David’s zeal to stand and fight for God. He gave David his best armor and hoped for the best result. In John Ortberg’s book, The Me I Want to Be, he points out that:
The very things that would help Saul in a battle would only hinder David. Saul’s tunic did not fit. His helmet was too big, his sword was too heavy, and his armor would only slow David down.
The same is true for our spiritual journey. The very things that draw me into the presence of God may hinder your pursuit of God. A scheduled Bible reading plan may push a creative, spontaneous person away from God. But a studious book lover may find God’s presence the strongest when reading His words. This is why it is so critical that we find our own disciplines that draw us closer to God and lead us deeper into the with-God life. I know of no better way to do this than using the Rule of Life exercise.
What Is a Rule of Life?
A rule is a regular rhythm we choose for our life in order to focus more on the ways of God. Through a rule, we partner with God’s transforming work in our lives. A rule of life gives us priorities and direction. It serves to weed out things that do not lead us closer to God. It is an intentional way of thinking about your own spiritual journey and how you are growing to become more like Christ.
A rule of life is descriptive in that it articulates our intentions and identifies the ways in which we want to live. And when we fall short of these intentions, the rule becomes prescriptive, showing us how we can return to the path that we have set for ourselves and recapture our original vision. It is not something fixed and rigid, but something which can and should be adapted to our present circumstances and shaped to fit our current needs and desires.
Your Rule of Life may look drastically different from mine. A 20 something stay at home mom will have disciplines in place that would never work for a 40 something business CEO. The beauty of the exercise is that it helps you define where you are most in need of discipline and where you are most present with God, helping you to come up with a rhythm of life that maximizes your spiritual growth through self-awareness.
Just Do It
There are many ways you can develop your Rule of Life. You can answer a few questions and be done. Or you can answer 10 pages of questions and write down a detailed plan. Don’t get bogged down in the tactics. Simply do it. Don’t let this slip away into that black hole of good ideas that you never capitalized on. I’m a living testimony of the life changing power of this tool. Am I perfect now that I started this one practice? No. But I am closer to God than I was before because I used this tool to identify disciplines that would draw me closer to God.
Get the Free Guide
I wish I could give you all of the details in this post but I simply can’t. What I can do, however, is provide you with a tool to guide you through the process of creating your own Rule of Life. This tool is a free pdf with more information about the Rule of Life along with 2 examples of how to do the exercise.
There are 2 ways to receive this free guide. The easiest way is to simply use the form in the sidebar to sign up for my email updates. As a follow up, you will receive the free guide to create your very own Rule of Life. If you are already a part of that list, simpy send me an email or leave a comment below to let me know that you would like me to send you the free guide.