Fewer, sustainable practices are better

Written by William Dmytrow

God is relevant in every one of our lives, whether we see it or not. Every spiritual breakthrough in my life came about as I obediently followed God in my spiritual disciplines.

I didn’t go to church or experience Jesus until I was 10 years old, when I began attending a summer Bible camp. But I was there for fun and friends rather than for faith reasons. It wasn’t until I was 14 that God changed my life forever at that Bible camp. During that week, God revealed the gift of prophecy in my life. I was excited, confused, but found. I committed my life to following Jesus.

With my eyes opened to God’s work in my life, I began evangelizing, reading the Bible, and praying frequently. But there was one problem: I had no sense of spiritual discipline. After camp every summer, I would pile multitudes of spiritual disciplines on my plate. Still, only one thing remained consistent—I consistently failed.

That changed after I experienced God in a low place in my life. God moved my heart back to new and life-giving paths when starting attending a church that loved me. I decided to commit to reading the Bible every single day—a commitment I have stuck with to this day. I also found the strength to pray frequently and pursue what God really wants in my life.

The godly influence of discipleship at that church began to lead me closer to Christ. The difference was my life was beginning to be shaped by Scripture and not by culture. Eventually, I found that this had been a process, not merely a feeling. 

More recently, the Bible camp I grew up attending reached a financial crisis. I was honoured to help avert this situation as a volunteer fundraising coordinator. We needed to raise an improbable $20,000 in eight days to keep our camp open for the next summer. I felt as if I had to perform, but I discovered that it’s not about me but about God and being obedient to him. In short, as a camp, we raised over $100,000.

During this time, I also figured out that my lifelong plan to become a police officer was not the Lord’s will for my life. In fact, it was ministry. I resisted this call heavily, but eventually, I ended up at Briercrest College where I am now passionately studying for a Bachelor of Arts in Christian ministry. I now know that God will use my gifts to work in a future ministry.

Sometimes I see what God is trying to do in my life, but I will honestly do anything not to do it. I have to remind myself often of the disciple Thomas, who asks Jesus in John 14:5-6, “We don’t know where you’re going. How can you know the way?” Jesus famously responds, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes through the Father except through me.”

As followers of Christ, we do not need to have our whole life mapped out. What we need is a relationship with Jesus and to trust that He is the way, the truth, and the life. We can build this trust through simple daily spiritual disciplines for God.

I encourage you to start by reading the book of John to get to know your Lord and Saviour better. Also, find out how you can get more involved with your church. For me, getting connected with a church family was life-changing. I will also invite you to pick out five minutes a day to pray—just five minutes.

Don’t overload yourself with unrealistic expectations that you will break in three days; that isn’t healthy. Lastly, God works in every one of our lives, He has gifted us all in different ways, and will definitely give abundant grace to those who seek to know Him deeper.