This lockdown period we are experiencing in South Africa has been a valuable time of reflection, a time to meditate and spend time in the Presence of God and renew some personal life commitments. During this time I have been reflecting on Spiritual Markers (feel free to read the previous blog posts on ‘Spiritual Markers’ and ‘How to Identify Them’) and how reminding myself of them has strengthened my faith and given me direction.
A spiritual marker is like a signpost erected at an important time in your life, where you made a decision or learnt something valuable that forever changed your life, or caused you to move in a particular direction as God led you. They are, by nature, personal, but significant to you as they markedly impacted you.
They indicate to you how you came to be where you are in your life’s journey and identify the people that influenced you. They also help you to determine the path you have walked up till now, as God has led you, and help you figure out the way you are most likely to follow in the future.
Spiritual Markers also play an essential role in bolstering my faith. They are signposts of truth to me—reminders of commitments and decisions. In times of darkness, they are the light that comforts me in confusion.
I often take the time to create a physical reminder of a spiritual marker in my living area. At times I have worn a bracelet with the word FROG (Fully Relying on God), to develop a new heart attitude in a scary period. I once had a tray for guests, to remind me to choose my words carefully and use every opportunity to encourage and build others up, a reflection of a decision I made to be an influencer of others.
The best example I can think of in my life is my rooster ornaments. The lesson that the rooster represented was to always start the day with an attitude of hope, for “His mercies are new every morning, great is His faithfulness.” To help me remember the principle and the lessons I learnt, I collected roosters and displayed them in my kitchen and garden. I had over 40 roosters eventually, and it became an unusual feature of our house, a talking point.
- It gave me the confidence and the courage I needed to face the daily battles I was dealing with at that time.
- It allowed me an opportunity to tell others why I collected roosters, what their spiritual significance was to me, and encouraged other people in their spiritual walk.
- Most of all, it built the spiritual memory into the lives of my children and family, who now themselves build onto that story with their own spiritual experiences—thereby passing on a spiritual heritage. My children had to explain to their friends why their Mom was so crazy about roosters, which allowed them to share their faith.
- It also gave context to what God was doing in my life, His ongoing activity into shaping me into the person He wanted me to be.
- As I shared with friends, it allowed me to praise God and testify to His goodness. Friends too embraced it as their story, adding their own spiritual experience to it.
That was just one marker. Making physical representations of important events or lessons has become a way to remind me regularly of God’s work in my life. At times they have even help me build new attitudes of faith and new behavior. When things have become really dark in life, an ornament that reminds me of a promise God gave me, could be the difference between giving in to discouragement or stepping out in faith.
If you have never taken the time to track spiritual markers in your life, do so now. Reflect over your life and identify any event, time or decision that had a significant impact on you and the direction of your life. The exercise in a journal is still to this day, a physical representation of a road map for life.
- It is particularly encouraging to see God’s hand in your life, a reminder to both you and me, that God will continue the work He is doing in us until the day of its completion. (Phil 1:6)
- It is also a road map that will give you a good indication of which direction God is most likely to take you next, which He will in His turn confirm, but with a lot less guessing on your part.
Most importantly, put some physical markers in your home, spiritual markers that will bolster your faith.
Lord, thank you that You are always teaching and guiding us. You are bringing essential people into our lives, faithfully transforming us into the people that glorify Your name. I declare that I remember and recall important events in my life, where You significantly changed and impacted me. Thank you for Your faithfulness to me, that I can track Your hand in my life, from birth to where I am today. Lord help us to be mindful of these spiritual markers so that we do not lose our way, reminding ourselves in a creative way of the truths You have established in our lives. I confess that God is doing good work in me and I confidently walk the path He has laid out for me.