Our Top Three Spiritual Practices

Last week we talked about trimming your beard.  There are many ways to trim your beard and your soul. Here are our top three practices.

Zach’s Three:

  1. Spoken Word Poetry and Liturgy and Meditation with Beads
  2. Conversations in Community, with all people
  3. Music

Below are a few of my favorite resources that I use for my Spiritual Practices. There are variety of books and audio productions that help me slow down, focus, let go of anxiety and stress and simply be closer to God.  I see having conversations with people as a Spiritual Discipline because it causes me to listen, understand, and be more in tune to where God is working not only in the people around me but my own life.  Not all of these conversations are had with Christians, many of them are with people of different faith’s and with people who claim no faith at all.  Yet if I am truly listening to where people are in life I can see God’s grace at work. Which in return helps me remain compassionate and hope to the world around me.

I also really love music, I love to listen to it and I love to play it.  Admittedly so I am not a very good musician, but I enjoy playing Bass Guitar, Ukulele, and every now and then I pick up the Acoustic Guitar.  My family can testify that I am not very good, but that’s not the point.  When I sit down to play, it means I am intentional about taking time out from being busy, and spending time being creative, relaxing, diligent, and ultimately coming closer to God.

See for me Spiritual Disciplines don’t have to look like waking up at 5 am praying and reading scripture over a dark black cup of coffee. I have found through the painful process of trying that, that simply does not work for me.  That is OK.  Find what works for you, let it speak to you, and do not let anyone tell you that it’s not a Spiritual Discipline.  If it brings you closer to God, that’s exactly what it is.

Keeping Pulse

To Bless the Space Between Us

Common Prayer: For Ordinary Radicals 

Praying with Beads

Some of my favorite Bands

Queen, Five Iron Frenzy, Mike Mains and the Branches, Ben Folds, The Roots, Eric Hutchinson, Need To Breathe, Next 2 the Tracks, Rivers & Robots, Leon Bridges, Rhett Walker Band, Tye Tribbett.  I also find joy in listening to comedians like Mike Birbiglia and John Mulaney ( The List could go on forever.)

 

Matt’s Three:

  1. siting meditation: I normally start my day in the office. Just closing my eyes and just focus on my breathing. I clear my head of all the stuff going on. And just focus on my breathing.  I sit for at least 15 min. Sometimes 30 min. I have found this to be very centering for me to start my day.
  2. Read, Reflect, Respond, A few years ago I started this practice click the link to see and example. I walk through the lectionary and on Friday I either look at the scripture reading I am preaching on to see if I missed something or if the spirit is leading me in a different place or I am reading a particular book in the Bible that I want to read.

  3. The Ignatian Examen: I have found this practice very helpful on Monday’s after a crazy Sunday. Let’s be honest most Sunday’s in Church work is crazy and taking time to decompress is a great way to handle it and to make sure you are doing well.I use the example of it in Tony Jones Book Soul Shaper. I also use this for our mission trip devotionals.

When I am looking for a new practice or to revisit one I look at the following books.

The Sacred Way: Spiritual Practices for Everyday Life

Finding Our Way Again: The Return of the Ancient Practices

Christian Meditation: Experiencing the Presence of God

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