Spiritual Styles / Preferences
We are all spiritual beings gloriously created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26-27).
Each of us has been wonderfully & fearfully created by the Lord in a unique & bespoke way (Psalm 139:14).
Created for relationship & blessed with gifts, talents & abilities to glorify God & serve humanity.
We all relate to God, one another & the world in similar & differing ways.
Understanding & appreciating the familiar & differing ways we relate to the Lord & one another can be helpful.
Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Genesis 1:26-27 NKJV
For You formed my inward parts;
You covered me in my mother’s womb.
I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.
My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.
Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.
And in Your book they all were written,
The days fashioned for me,
When as yet there were none of them. Psalm 139:13-16
Just as there are 4 basic personality types so there are also some common spiritual styles or preferences.
Each reflects the way we most readily respond to spiritual thinsgs:
- The way of the intellect & understanding WORD (Head – learning / knowledge)
- The way of the emotions HEART (emotions & experience)
- The journey & experience of mystery SYMBOL (quest – aesthetics)
- The path & road to justice ACTION (doing / serving practically)
It is likely that we express elements of all 4 of the differing styles with a dominance or default in 1 or 2 areas.
The styles are unseen & often unappreciated but they do impact each one of us every moment of every day.
They are distinct yet also fluid, flexible & they overlap & interact with one another.
They impact the core of our being ‘the inner heart’ shaping how we relate to God, one another & the world.
As they do so they are constantly influencing what we value & treasure.
Revel in your strong preferred style but be prepared to embrace & experience ALL four. That is maturity.
We will explore each style a little more over the coming days.
Understanding how we & others relate to & respond to spiritual things helps us deepen our relationships & experiences.
Aware of my strong areas I can seek to grow & devlope in those areas where I am not so strong or comfortable.
Aware of how others respond I can intentionally seek to communicate or do things that they will readily engage with & embrace.
Mindful of my own
comfort zones I can seek to step outside my set boundaries & limitations!!
These are all a part of the way we develop in our spiritual formation ’In Christ’ (Colossians 1:28).
- What do you suspect is your preferred style or strong preference?
- How willing am I to extend my
comfort zone& stretch the boundaries?
- Meditate on how wonderfully we have been made.
A song related to this theme:
Thank you that I am fearfully & wonderfully made in Your image.
Lord Jesus draw me ever deeper into your heart.
Holy Spirit help & strengthen me to keep growing & maturing in my faith,
To become more & more like Jesus.
This I ask in, & through, Your mighty Name.
Written by Gareth Jones