Adapted from Handbook to Spiritual Growth
THE SPIRITUAL JOURNEY
We are called to be apprentices of Jesus in kingdom living, and this requires time, development, and patience. As the gospels illustrate, knowing and believing in Christ is a dynamic process. Spiritual formation—the lifelong process of becoming in our character and actions the new creations we already are in Christ—is gradual. We become more substantial and real as we cooperate with the process by years of small choices in favor of God’s purposes. Each choice, whether to obey or resist, makes the next one possible. For this reason, the best metaphor for life as a whole and for the spiritual life in particular is that of a journey.
We are travelers on a quest, a voyage, an odyssey, a pilgrimage. Following Christ is a step-by-step process, with various stages and lessons along the way. On this journey, we will experience uncertainties, setbacks, disappointments, surprises, and joys; through it all, God is teaching us to count on His purposeful guidance, His grace when we go off the path, and His presence when we feel alone.