The Secret of How to Grow Spiritually

The Secret of How to Grow Spiritually

Understand the secret of how to grow spiritually so you can boost your spiritual development to new levels once and for all

Tags: psychology, consumption, psychology of consumption, invest, spiritual growth, how to grow spiritually


Like most Christians, I was searching for how to grow spiritually and looking to boost my spiritual development.

I found myself sitting in a grade school cafeteria at the age of 34.

I was sitting with about 30 others in our “church” building at the time.

We had gathered to learn from an invited guest... an expert in prayer.

He taught methods to build the quantity and quality of prayer time into our busy and distracted lives.

One of his suggestions was to create prayer cards. Here’s what one looks like:

Example Notecard Prayer Card


I quickly saw how prayer cards could improve my personal prayer time.

But I needed something more accessible given my over-scheduled lifestyle.

I needed the ability to organize and keep prayer requests online – an online prayer journal!

And I knew I wasn't the only one.

So I got to work on a solution with my twin brother (the technical guy). We started building an online prayer journal.

Within 6 months, OnlinePrayerJournal.com was up and running! Anyone could visit, set up an account, and create their own prayer cards.

Dozens of people soon signed up for free accounts.

Awesome!

At least I thought it was awesome...

An Unintended Problem


It was exciting to have a growing list of members at OnlinePrayerJournal.com...

...but I soon noticed something disturbing.

You see, very few members actually used their online prayer journal after sign up.

Only 293 prayer requests had been entered across 130 members. That’s a total of only 2.25 prayer requests entered per member!

Surely members intended to pray much more than these numbers showed!

Further, after adding a prayer journal feature – only 3 of 22 new members took time to enter a single journal entry!

Three months later, only 1 person added more than a single entry!

I was confused.

Why weren't people using their prayer cards and prayer journal as intended at sign up?

With these tools freely available, what was stopping them from taking advantage?

So I dug in...

...and I found out something I didn't expect!

A Problem with Motivation


It turns out people need to invest for anything to be valuable and effective.

There is little to no accountability without paying for something.

This phenomenon is known as “the psychology of consumption.”

Here’s how it works...

According to the psychology of consumption, we are much more likely to benefit from using the things we pay for regularly.

Consider gym memberships. The member who spends $50/month is much more likely to use the gym than another who spends $600/year for the same membership - even though their total annual price is identical.

The pain felt by paying a monthly bill for an unused membership provides enough motivation to work out at the gym regularly. The result is the healthy, great-looking body they wanted at sign up.

That was it!

OnlinePrayerJournal.com members were not using their accounts regularly because they were not paying for them. The free offer was sabotaging the better prayer life they wanted at sign up.

The Secret of Ensuring Spiritual Growth


The psychology of consumption has important implications for our spiritual growth that we cannot ignore.

We need to invest in order to nourish our spiritual growth.

We need to invest to prove our commitment to growth to our inner selves.

Ultimately, we need to invest to experience the growth benefits we desire.

We increase our chances of using what we buy dramatically through the simple act of paying for them.

The good news is that there are plenty of opportunities to express our commitment to spiritual growth through investment.

Perhaps the most obvious place to start is the churches we attend.

We not only invest our time in being present with other members of the church community, but we also invest our dollars into the church’s operations in support of their community outreach and ministries.

Beyond church, we can invest in resources such as Bible studies, Christian music, Christian books, small group resources, prayer journals, and more.

Some of these resources are freely available. But buying them provides the actual motivation to use them!

Did you know that Christians spend around $1 billion on Christian music, another $1 billion on Christian books, and $8 billion on missions trips, each year!?

Beyond their enjoyment from these purchases, they are also investing in their spiritual growth in a way that becomes more deeply rooted because they spent money on their growth efforts.

Whoever bought a song on iTunes they didn’t listen to? But many got rid of the “free” U2 album Apple provided with the iPhone 6 launch!

Whoever didn't read a book they bought? But many have had to return books to the library they never actually made the time to read!

Finally, whoever went on a missions trip that didn't return somehow more deeply committed to their spiritual growth?

Exercise


Don’t just take my word for it.

I know that you may still be skeptical about how immune you are from the psychology of consumption because I was.

I want you to find out for yourself with this simple exercise. Try these 3 steps:
1. List out the last 3 things you bought
2. Now list the last 3 things you got for free
3. Next to each item on the list, write down the number of times you used each over the previous week

See what I mean?

Conclusion


We produce a lot of activity to enhance our spiritual growth. But often, these activities don’t seem to take deep root.

The psychology of consumption may be the missing ingredient. Understanding it can help us make positive choices to invest in our spiritual growth to ensure we gain the benefits.

Our own experience here at OnlinePrayerJournal.com highlights how important it is to find ways to invest in tools and resources for our spiritual growth.

Doing so may just provide the jolt you need to make sure you actually use them so you can experience deeper spiritual growth you desire.

Inspire your friends, too:

 
 
 
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About Us

Our founders are twins from the Heartland of America looking to help other busy people feel growth in their faith and walk with Jesus. The distractions in our world are overwhelming. They quickly consume our best intentions to pray, spend time in devotion, and read the bible. It's easy to get stuck! That's why we create tools to help you use technology to make it easy to stay on track with your spiritual growth :) Learn more...

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