True spirituality manifests itself in certain dominant desires.
1. First is the desire to be holy rather than happy.
2. A man may be considered spiritual when he wants to see the honor of God advanced through his life even if it means that he himself must suffer temporary dishonor or loss.
3. The spiritual man wants to carry his cross.
4. Again, a Christian is spiritual when he sees everything from God's viewpoint.
5. Another desire of the spiritual man is to die right rather than to live wrong.
6. The desire to see others advance at his expense.
7. The spiritual man habitually makes eternity-judgments instead of time-judgments.
The supreme test for them really is whether they have found the hour in church enjoyable, whether the music being good, the singing hearty, the decorations no offense to the eye, the curtains the right shade, the building beautiful, they come away "feeling" better. The sense that truth, saving truth, the truth that liberates, is at once infinitely valuable and infinitely difficult to come by is almost completely absent.
In my own pastoral and personal Christian experience, I can say that I’ve never known a man or woman who came to spiritual maturity except through discipline. Godliness comes through discipline.
Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life, 1991, p. 17, Used by permission of NavPress – www.navpress.com, All rights reserved. For more information please see the website www.BibicalSpirituality.org.
We have to know that one of the great marks of spiritual maturity is being able to take admonition and rebuke! This matter of being able to admit faults and seek to correct them is a mark of maturity.
Max A. Forsythe
Sermon: A Lack of Maturity, Malachi 2:1-9.
Alas! Much has been done of late to promote the production of dwarfish Christians. Poor, sickly believers turn the church into an hospital, rather than an army. Oh, to have a church built up with the deep godliness of people who know the Lord in their very hearts, and will seek to follow the Lamb wherever he goes!
The Christian life is very much like climbing a hill of ice. You cannot slide up. You have to cut every step with an ice axe. Only with incessant labor in cutting and chipping can you make any progress. If you want to know how to backslide, leave off going forward. Cease going upward and you will go downward of necessity. You can never stand still.
You are not mature if you have a high esteem of yourself. He who boasts in himself is but a babe in Christ, if indeed he be in Christ at all. Young Christians may think much of themselves. Growing Christians think themselves nothing. Mature Christians know that they are less than nothing. The more holy we are, the more we mourn our infirmities, and the humbler is our estimate of ourselves.
The true test of a man’s spirituality is not his ability to speak, as we are apt to think, but rather his ability to bridle his tongue.
Disciplines of a Godly Man, Crossway Books, 1991, p. 142.
While God is not pleased with my sin and may discipline me in order to turn me from destructive paths and practices, His love for me does not diminish in any degree. He gave himself for my sins in their entirety, so that I might have His love in its entirety… Accepting this reality of God’s unchanging regard is necessary for us to make progress in the Christian life.
Holiness by Grace, Crossway, p. 54.
The person who bears and suffers evils with meekness and silence, is the sum of a Christian man.
When God prunes us, the result will be greater growth and sweeter fruit… Pruning usually takes place when God uses situations, people, and circumstances to help mature us in our Christian disposition, attitude, and temperament… The way we respond when we are pruned reveals our true level of spiritual maturity.
P. Bunny Wilson
Taken from: Biblical Womanhood in the Home by Nancy Leigh DeMoss, Crossway, 2002, p. 108, 109, 104.
The ultimate test of our spirituality is the measure of our amazement at the grace of God.
D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Quoted in: Reformation and Revival Journal, v. 13, n. 3, p. 173.
It is very rare for the spirituality of a group of Christians to exceed that of its leaders.
Quoted in: Reformation and Revival Journal, v. 13, n. 3, p. 77.
It is a mistake to assess spirituality simply on the basis of a person's emotional display. What you want to be careful of is looking around at people in the church service and seeing people really into it – on their knees, people singing with glazed-over eyes, people expressing a lot of emotion, people weeping – and drawing the conclusion that because people are responding emotionally that they have a deeper connection with God or a more mature faith than the person who is not reacting emotionally at all. This is a profound error… Emotional response is not in any sense a Scriptural measure of spiritual maturity.
Genuine Revival, Stand to Reason Commentary.
Do you know what the measure of spiritual maturity is in the Scriptures? It is not the display of spiritual emotion, or even the display of spiritual gifts, but the manifestation of spiritual fruit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, self-control.
Genuine Revival, Stand to Reason Commentary.