Gordon MacDonald is a best-selling author, a ministry leader and statesman, and long-time pastor.
Growing deep doesn’t happen without intention, and Gordon talks with Neil about not taking the summer off spiritually and intentionality in spiritual growth.
“The Christian life isn’t seasonal.”
He shares that while churches can be very good at creating programs to address various groups, those programs are not always the best at producing deep Christians. Rather, he thinks that exploring the questions of each life stage is key in growing deeper.
“Every stage of life presents new questions, new challenges, and the growth that I did in the 20s and early 30s of my life, that was appropriate to life as I was living it in my 20s and 30s. Now I’m in my early 70s and I’m discovering there is a whole series of new spiritual issues that surround my walk with God that frankly, 40 years ago, I knew nothing about.”
Gordon discuses the phases of spiritual questions that emerge over the course of a person’s life. Certain periods of life lend themselves to certain questions that pass as people grow older and their situations change.
“There’s always questions emerging that I never imagined 10 years ago.”
He also discussed the temptation to compartmentalize the Christian faith to one section of life instead of allowing the Gospel to affect every dimension of a person’s life at every age.
A key habit for him that has fostered continued growth was taking time in the mornings to orient himself to life the way God would want him to live. Discipline, in this area and others is important and necessary according to Gordon.
“Discipline is really a deliberate kind of suffering. It’s creating conditions that most people want to avoid and pressing yourself to become deeper.”
In this conversation Gordon also discusses the importance of order in life and enduring life over the long-haul.