Having a quiet time is a spiritual goal. Following a to-do list is a non-spiritual goal.
If we look at Christianity from a behavioral point of view (Christians do this; Christians don’t do that), then yes, certain goals are more spiritual than others.
But if we look at Christianity from a heart point of view, then all our presuppositions fall by the wayside. Eating and to-do lists suddenly become spiritual goals if they have anything to do with the heart.
The truth is that non-sin habits can become idols and sins if we’re using those habits to walk away from God or to make life about things other than God.
My project is an example: make a list each day and renew my mind whenever I don’t want to follow it. When I come to a hard job, I don’t even think about going to God for help. Instead, I just waste time.
What I’ve found, though, is that coping techniques tend to mess you up whether they’re sinful or not.
If I go to God for help with my to-do list, He’ll control me. If I go to my non-sin habit (wasting time) for help, that non-sin habit will control me.
It will also blind me to my heart sin.
When I go to God, He says, Look, Barb, you’re really being indulgent here. You’re thinking you shouldn’t have to do hard things unless you’re rewarded for them. Plus you don’t like being embarrassed, and I want you to step out and do some embarrassing things for me.
When I go to my coping techniques for help, I don’t hear God’s voice.
Missing Out on God
That’s a shame. Because not only do I miss out on even noticing my sin, I also miss out on His delightful love and His power to help me overcome my sin.
It’s hard to make myself renew my mind every time I don’t feel like doing my list. It’s hard to even remember that I’m supposed to be following my list.
But I’m going to keep pressing on because I want God to be in control of all of me—even the parts that don’t look sinful on the surface.
Question: Do you think some goals are more spiritual than others? How has working on transformation made a difference in your relationship with God?