Our Four Habits: Growing as Disciples of Jesus

September 16, 2021

Jesus launched the Church as a mission to make disciples — learners and practitioners of the Way of Jesus.

The word “disciple” is used 269 times in the New Testament. The word “Christian” is used just 3 times — introduced first to refer to disciples of Jesus.  Disciples are not people who profess certain beliefs, but people who have come to apply them in an on-going relationship with the living God.

The great challenge facing many of us who identify as Christians is whether or not we will become true disciples. Jesus does not call us to make converts to Christianity but to make disciples — something we can’t do unless we are truly disciples ourselves. If we do not pursue genuine discipleship, we will remain locked in defeat even as sincere believing Christians.

The purpose of this new series is to lay out the core spiritual habits that we believe best facilitate true growth as followers of Jesus. Only devoted discipleship to Jesus can bring the inward transformation that is the basis for the promised life set forth in pages of the New Testament. This series will teach these truths and connect them to regular practices and opportunities in the life of our ministry.

Spiritual formation is the process through which those who love and trust Jesus Christ effectively take on His character. When this process is what it should be, they increasing live their lives as He would if He were in their place.

Dallas Willard

At Browncroft, our four spiritual habits are:

Spend Time With God

This is a daily practice of reading God’s Word while also letting it read you.

Only God’s Word can penetrate our minds and our wills and lead us into repentance and true life change. With the help of the Holy Spirit we not only hear from God but are moved to response by speaking back to God in prayer and thanksgiving.

For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

Hebrews 4:12

Spend Time With Others

Jesus did not simply leave us a book but a community. Only in a committed relationship with others can we experience the fullness of God’s grace and truth. Many of us struggle in our faith because we’re not living it out in a community with others who are invested in our growth.

As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.

John 13:34-35

Know & Use Your Gifts

The Christian life is not just about knowing Jesus but becoming more like Him. One of the chief ways we grow more like him is joining him in the work of the Gospel. Every person who becomes a Christian is given unique gifts from God. The use of these gifts plays a central role in our spiritual growth.

For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Ephesians 2:10

Share Your Faith

Most people first intersect the Gospel message in the context of a need in their life. We need to know people’s needs and questions before we can address them. And one of the most effective ways to discover another’s needs is to talk about your ownto share how God’s grace has changed you.

Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.

Colossians 4:5-6

This series is an invitation to all of us do go deeper with Jesus. I encourage you — wherever you are in your faith — to take this journey with us.

Make your spiritual growth the most important part of your life by building habits for lasting change.

About The Author

Further reading

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Embracing Summer Sundays: Serving the Next Generation

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