I woke up today thinking about my personal growth and where I want to go, the kind of man I want to keep becoming. I think I am making progress, but I know—I feel—that there is a lot more I could make, a lot more adventure and joy.

God has an incredible future for you and me, and making progress is the road to that joyful, fantastic life. Like most people, I am bit impatient and would like to make huge strides quickly so that I can reach more joy and satisfaction. But (and I am sure you experience this), I sometimes make good progress, and then things slow down or stop. Eventually, I do get moving again, and I am a better man than I was days, months, and years ago.

But, I know I can do more: I know that we all can do more because I have seen it in others, and the Father’s spirit within me tells me as well. I want to be able to tell my angelic friends and God that I did my best when I awake on the other side to continue the eternal adventure of growth and service.

That spirit is your unique personal guide; no one has a spirit guide that is exactly like yours: the Father has given you a piece of Himself to motivate and guide you to be better each 24 hours, 24 days, 24 months, 24 years, and on into eternity. The secret fire for growth—the hunger for truth and personal perfection—is this vibrant, loving spirit within us.

OK, so I can feel the fire, I desire advancement. I want to serve others. How can I best cooperate with this spirit, and, just as importantly, how can I make sure that I keep cooperating? I’ll discuss both of these areas below.

Strategies to Help the Spirit Within

So, here are three things that we can do to assist the spirit within:10061003

  • Choosing to respond to divine leading; sincerely basing the human life on the highest consciousness of truth, beauty, and goodness, and then coordinating these qualities of divinity through wisdom, worship, faith, and love.
  • Loving God and desiring to be like him — genuine recognition of the divine fatherhood and loving worship of the heavenly Parent.
  • Loving man and sincerely desiring to serve him — wholehearted recognition of the brotherhood of man coupled with an intelligent and wise affection for each of your fellow mortals.

The Urantia Book (Paper 110:3.7)

Keeping the Progress Going

So, the strategies to help the spirit are very powerful, but only if we do them. They key is to find a way to get started and keep on doing them. First, you have to be wholehearted as often and as long as you can. Then, you need to start forming habits to support your growth (check out my blog post).

You can think of your spiritual growth as a garden. You have to decide to cultivate your soul; you have to prepare the soil; you have to plant the right seeds; and you need to take care of the garden. If you do those things, then you have progress and realize all the joy—and more—that you yearn for.

The Nature of Progress

Many people believe that all personal transformation must be sudden, that this is the best way to go. But, it usually isn’t. For the most part, it’s an evolutionary process, rather than a revolutionary process. But, the only thing that matters is that you are trying to move forward. That is all that God cares about: He knows your true longings, your true motivations, and wants you to find that glorious life of joy and accomplishment here on Earth and for the eternal future.

The religion of Jesus does not seek to escape this life in order to enjoy the waiting bliss of another existence. The religion of Jesus provides the joy and peace of another and spiritual existence to enhance and ennoble the life which men now live in the flesh.

The Urantia Book (Paper 194:3.3)

Decisions are Your Magic Wand

The spirit within is in the business of helping you transform in ways that you thought were impossible. Your spirit has no limitations; it can bring you to undreamed of worlds of progress. But, your spirit is helpless unless you make decisions to cooperate: you should use the three strategies I discussed before.

In my blog post on wholeheartedness, I said the key is to make as many 100% decisions to follow the spirit as possible. These decisions should not only be to follow the three strategies, but to create an environment in your life that will support and sustain you in making these decisions (see my blog post on spiritual habits).

The keys of the kingdom of heaven are: sincerity, more sincerity, and more sincerity. All men have these keys. Men use them—advance in spirit status—by decisions, by more decisions, and by more decisions. The highest moral choice is the choice of the highest possible value, and always—in any sphere, in all of them—this is to choose to do the will of God. —The Urantia Book  (Paper 39:4.14)

Challenge Yourself7308255

So, with all the matchless, unlimited spiritual gifts that all of us have, we should challenge ourselves to make the personal transformations we thought were impossible. Whatever personal growth issue you are facing can be overcome. Remember, there is no limit to what the spirit can do, that is, if you are cooperating.

Let’s become the spiritual athletes that God wants us to become. Let’s make a commitment, make a plan, sacrifice for our training, and keep a positive, spiritual attitude. The only thing we’re competing against is ourselves—our desire to grow. And, like a team, let’s work to help others who want to be on that same quest.

Let’s follow God’s leading; let’s do our loving Father’s will as the purpose of our lives.

Always remember, you are a child of God, the Father of all that is. You are meant for greatness in a limitless future of light and life. He loves you no matter what and welcomes you in a divine embrace. All that’s needed to begin is your acceptance of his existence, that you are his child, and that others are your brothers and sisters. Then you can begin your growth adventure with brave, forceful decisions to follow the leading within.

Release your faith action. Become truly great. Become a spiritually invincible faith child of the Creator.

May you know the full joy of the embrace of the spirit within. May you know the increasing joy of spiritual growth.

–Chris Lepine

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