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by Scott Wylie

Renewal, as a biblical discipline, is a transformative process that Christians embark upon to rejuvenate their spiritual lives. It involves the deliberate effort to draw closer to God, shedding old ways and adopting a renewed mindset in alignment with His will. Throughout the Bible, God encourages His people to engage in the process of renewal, assuring them of His transformative power and grace.

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Infographic on the Biblical characteristic of Spiritual Renewal

Key Passages on Renewal

  1. Psalm 51:10 (ESV): "Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me." This heartfelt plea from King David demonstrates his desire for spiritual renewal and transformation.

  2. 2 Corinthians 4:16 (ESV): "So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day." This verse highlights the ongoing nature of spiritual renewal, which occurs day by day through the work of the Holy Spirit.

  3. Isaiah 40:31 (ESV): "But they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint." This passage assures believers that waiting on the Lord results in renewed strength.

Cultivate Renewal

Tips for Pursuing Renewal According to the Bible:

  1. Prayer: Engage in heartfelt and sincere prayer, seeking God's presence and guidance in your journey of renewal. Pray for a renewed heart and spirit.

  2. Repentance: Acknowledge and confess your sins. Psalm 32:5 reminds us, "I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity; I said, 'I will confess my transgressions to the LORD,' and you forgave the iniquity of my sin."

  3. Study Scripture: Regularly immerse yourself in God's Word. Romans 12:2 advises, "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind." Scripture renewal transforms our thinking.

  4. Worship: Participate in corporate worship and personal praise. Worship helps us focus on God's greatness and renew our devotion to Him.

  5. Fasting: Consider periodic fasting as a means to seek God's guidance and renewal. Jesus Himself fasted as a spiritual discipline (Matthew 4:2).

  6. Seek Accountability: Connect with fellow believers who can hold you accountable in your journey of renewal and offer support and encouragement.

  7. Serve Others: Engage in acts of service and love toward others. Acts of service help us emulate Christ's character and experience personal renewal.

  8. Forgiveness: Forgive others as you have been forgiven. Colossians 3:13 encourages us to "bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive."

  9. Practice Thankfulness: Cultivate a heart of gratitude. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 reminds us to "give thanks in all circumstances."

  10. Rest in God: Trust in God's sovereignty and rest in His promises. Isaiah 40:31 assures us that those who wait on the Lord will be renewed.

  11. Seek the Holy Spirit: Rely on the Holy Spirit's guidance and power for spiritual transformation. Galatians 5:16 reminds us to "walk by the Spirit."

  12. Reflect and Evaluate: Periodically assess your spiritual walk and seek areas that require renewal. Psalm 139:23-24 encourages us, "Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts!"

Spiritual renewal is not a one-time event but an ongoing journey of transformation and growth in the Christian faith. By engaging in prayer, repentance, Scripture study, worship, fasting, accountability, service, forgiveness, thankfulness, resting in God, seeking the Holy Spirit, and self-reflection, Christians can actively pursue spiritual renewal according to the Bible. It is through this process that believers draw closer to God, become more Christlike, and experience the abundant life that Christ offers.

Prayer and Reading Guide for Pursuing Renewal

Here are ten things Christians could pray for to help them pursue spiritual renewal, along with a corresponding Bible verse from the English Standard Version (ESV) for each one:

  1. Pray for a Renewed Heart:
    "Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me." - Psalm 51:10
  2. Pray for Repentance and Forgiveness: 
    "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." - 1 John 1:9
  3. Pray for Wisdom and Discernment: 
    "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him." - James 1:5
  4. Pray for a Hunger for God's Word: 
    "Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied." - Matthew 5:6
  5. Pray for a Spirit of Worship: 
    "God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth." - John 4:24
  6. Pray for Self-Denial and Surrender: 
    "And he said to all, 'If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.'" - Luke 9:23
  7. Pray for the Filling of the Holy Spirit: 
    "And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit." - Ephesians 5:18
  8. Pray for Spiritual Fruitfulness: 
    "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law." - Galatians 5:22-23
  9. Pray for a Heart of Gratitude: 
    "Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you." - 1 Thessalonians 5:18
  10. Pray for Spiritual Strength and Endurance: 
    "But they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint." - Isaiah 40:31

Through these prayers, Christians can seek God's guidance, forgiveness, wisdom, and transformation, as well as a deeper hunger for His Word, a spirit of worship, self-denial, the filling of the Holy Spirit, spiritual fruitfulness, a heart of gratitude, and the strength to endure in their pursuit of spiritual renewal. These prayers align with biblical principles and serve as a foundation for a renewed and vibrant spiritual life.

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S Sarath says:
Useful points for study and for prayer