God speaks to us—in prayer, in the Bible, and through each other.
Many of us engage in the regular work of caring for our minds and bodies. We eat, rest, exercise and form meaningful relationships. When any of these practices are missing or out of balance, our bodies and minds suffer. Our spiritual health develops in much the same way; the balanced practices of prayer, studying the scriptures, and participation in a faith community, grows our spiritual health.
When we spend more time in God’s presence, when we learn about God through sacred texts, and when we deepen our relationships with others in vulnerable and authentic ways, our experience of faith grows in life-changing ways.
Goal #1: Join a community group.
We are not meant to experience life alone. God created us to be in relationship with others. Joining a community group is an important early step in participating in Christian community. In community we gather to eat, talk about our lives, engage with the stories of scripture and pray together. In community we find that our lives are enriched by the way God is revealed in others. In community we are stronger as we support one another and walk together.
Where to Begin
Participate in one of our dinner, study, or justice groups. Dinner groups meet monthly, study groups meet weekly, and justice groups meet as needed. Find a group that fits your schedule, interest or geographic needs. Take a risk on sharing your life with others!
What do you hope to get out of meeting with a community group? Do you think the risk of being vulnerable with others will be worth the reward?
Goal #2: Create a pattern of prayer and practice it daily.
Prayer is simply having a conversation with God. There is no one way or “right” way to pray. Prayer can involve listening or in silence, drawing a picture, journaling your thoughts to God, using a printed prayer guide—there are as many ways to pray as there are people!
Where to Begin
Start simple–Pick one time of day to pray and stick to it. For example: say a prayer of thanks before a meal or first thing in the morning, pray the Lord’s Prayer before you leave the house each day. Work prayer into your life each day and soon you’ll find you are conversing with God throughout the day.
Set an alarm on your phone for a specific time of the day to remind you to pray. Have one alarm to pray for Two Rivers Church and our community.
Try using a written prayer guide—we recommend Common Prayer for Ordinary Radicals by Shane Claiborne. You can also download the Common Prayer app on your phone.
Try a meditative listening prayer like Centering Prayer or Lectio Divina.
How do you connect best to God? How might you use that connection as a place of prayer?
Goal #3: Read the Bible or a devotional guide at least once every day.
The Bible isn’t a collection of dusty words written by people from long ago. We understand scripture to be filled with the Holy Spirit. When we engage scripture, we get access to the nature and character of God and a sense of who Jesus is. Reading the Bible daily connects us to God and God’s people across millennia. We take the Bible seriously, not literally. For us, the Bible is a library which tells the stories of people encountering God throughout the ages.
Where to Begin
One approach is to read the entire Bible–all 27 books–over the course of a year. If you don’t want to miss a single word, this might be the best approach for you! Check out our 365 day reading plan at trchs.org/365.
Start with one of the first four books in the New Testament (Matthew, Mark, Luke or John). These books, often called the “Gospels” share the story of Jesus’ life.
Reading a Psalm a day is also a great option; the Psalms have been the prayer and songbook of God’s people for thousands of years.
Check out our website for a list of inclusive devotional and prayer guides.
What level of comfort do you have with the Bible? How do you hope to grow in your understanding of scripture?