Growing in Faith
God doesn’t just want us to come to Christ and stay where we are. Just like a child grows to adulthood, God wants us to grow in our faith after we place our trust in Christ. Below are some excellent resources to aid in your growth.
While you can certainly do a lot of studying, learning, and growing on your own, God intends for the Christian life to be lived out in community with others. We encourage you to find another Christian that might walk through life with you right now, and to join a small group that will connect you with others who also want to grow.
A Roadmap of Discipleship
When I’m heading out somewhere the app on my phone shows me where I am and then the path to where I want to go. Where we’re heading is maturity in Christ, but the path is sometimes difficult to discern. We recognize that everyone’s life and path is as different as our individual experiences and personalities. Even the sufferings we go through often guide the growth process in our life. Nevertheless we want to provide some basic guidance for a Christian’s path to spiritual maturity.
The Discipleship Phases Circle and corresponding Roadmap below along with other resources will never replace the important role a one-on-one discipleship relationship plays in a believer’s life. Therefore we suggest you not just do these studies and struggle with growing closer to Christ on your own, but develop a friendship with the person that led you to Christ, or your small group leader, or another Christian you look up to and walk this road together.
Use this Discipleship Phases Circle and corresponding Discipleship Phases Roadmap to give you a little direction on what areas you might need To Know and what areas you might need To Do in your life. Then ask your friend to help you walk through those Things To Know and Things To Do.
Images courtesy of Canyon Hills Community Church
Books designed for new believers searching for answers about Christianity.
Books designed for growing followers of Christ wanting to focus on living by faith.
Books designed for growing servants of Christ wanting to focus on loving by faith.
Books designed for growing leaders wanting to lead by faith and share the gospel.
After you come to Christ and start learning about what all this means for your life, you will want to get baptized. Baptism represents what happened to you when you came to Christ. It is a beautiful picture of the washing away of our sins and our identification with Christ in his death, burial, and resurrection. HERE is a brochure written by Randy that describes baptism well.
Talk to your small group leader, a mentor, or a pastor if you have more questions about baptism or if you feel like you are ready to take this step.
As you continue in your journey of growing more Christ-like you will want to take advantage of all the means of growth God has provided. These are called spiritual disciplines. Just as an athlete exercises various disciplines to get ready for a game or race, so we as Christians have disciplines that train us for godliness and draw us toward maturity in Christ. (1 Timothy 4:7-8)
From Scripture we can discern several means of growth God has given us. They include among others solitude, silence, fasting, prayer, Bible reading, fellowship, worship, suffering, and giving.
A succinct overview of some of the spiritual disciplines is HERE.
If you want to dig deeper into understanding and applying the disciplines to your life, check out these books:
In our Starting Point 201 class we teach more about the spiritual disciplines and how we grow in our faith.
Again, God does not intend for the Christian life to be traversed as a solo traveler. Seek out the person who led you to Christ, your small group leader, or another Christian you look up to and walk this road together.
God has provided for every Christian special abilities or talents that he intends to be used to help others and to see his Kingdom expand. The Bible gives us some lists of these gifts (see Romans 12:6-8, 2 Corinthians 12:8-10, Ephesians 4:11, 1 Peter 4:9-11).
Get started learning about these gifts HERE, and use this online tool to assess for yourself what spiritual gifts you might have. Maybe God will use your gifts in the lives of others in some wonderful ways!
You can learn more about spiritual gifts and other ways God has gifted you to serve others in our Starting Point 401 class.