The more I study the Lord’s Prayer, the more I conclude the prayer asks for one and only one thing: that God would make us completely righteous once and for all.
What happens when pastors start looking at their congregation as a means to an end instead of a flock to shepherd? Consider these real-life examples of the ways 3 different churches went about seeking volunteers.
The theology of Spiritual Formation assumes there is a level a spirituality that I can have if I do certain spiritual practices. Prayer is typically is one of those practices. Yet, the biblical picture of prayer is not a spiritual discipline that I use to reach a higher spiritual level. Rather prayer is an unavoidable mandatory battlefield in the war of faith.
Not only does the theology of spiritual formation aim at the wrong target, spiritual formation seeks the wrong kind of change. While spiritual disciplines focus on success at outward righteous behavior, the Bible teaches that the goal of spiritual maturity is a strong unshakeable faith.
The theology of Spiritual Formation sounds great on paper, but it is focused on the wrong target. Progress toward greater spirituality is measured by what can be seen (for example, how well I maintain the routines of sabbath, bible reading, confession; how loving my actions are toward others; how much I experience greater joy and contentment; how well I serve and sacrifice, etc.) which means success is measured by outward righteous behavior. But is outward righteous behavior the right target?