When we put our faith in Jesus and decide to follow him, the Bible says that we become a new creation (2 Cor. 5:17; 1 Pet. 1:3). The Holy Spirit dwells in us, guiding and working in us to become more and more like Christ. The Bible makes it clear what the Holy Spirit produces in us: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Gal. 5:22). Rather than an instant change, think of the Holy Spirit more as like a sculptor, chipping away at the parts of our character that don’t honour the Lord.
It is no longer us who live, but Christ who lives in us (Gal. 2:20). Because of that, our focus is on making Jesus greater, and making less of ourselves (John 3:30).
How do we grow in our faith?
There is a number of things we can do, but a great place to start is reading our Bible regularly and praying to God. We have already discussed the importance of reading the Bible, but what is prayer?
Put simply, prayer is communicating with God and it is extremely important in the life of a Christian. It is where we admit our need and dependence on God. Even Jesus prayed to His Father in Heaven when he was on the earth (Luke 6:12)!
Prayer can be in silence or out loud; it can be listening or talking. The Bible says that we can be confident that God hears us when we talk to him (1 John 5:14) and that when we draw near to Him, He draws near to us (James 4:8). We can thank Him for what He has blessed us with, we can praise Him for how incredible He is, and we can ask Him to guide and support us. We should pray on behalf of those who persecute us (Matt. 5:44) and when we are in trouble (James 5:13). In every situation we should pray (Phil. 4:6), presenting our requests and needs to God…in fact, the Bible says that we should pray continually (1 Thess. 5:17). Jesus even gives us an example of how we should pray in Matthew 6:9-13.
The most important thing about prayer is that we can be real. The book of Psalms has some wonderful examples of King David being very honest with God and yet still full of worship for Him. The Bible teaches us that God knows our thoughts before we even speak (Psalm 139:4), so there really is no use being anything but honest with the Lord!