It is not uncommon for many people, at some point in their life, to start identifying what is missing from it. None of us are perfect, none of us are living perfectly fulfilled lives, but we can get a lot closer to happiness when we identify what we’re missing and try to embody it more. If you feel like faith is what you’re missing, you might wonder how, exactly, you can fit it in your life. The answer is that faith can play a huge range of roles in your life. Where you fit it depends on you, but here are some suggestions.
Make prayer a daily thing
Whatever your faith is, it’s almost a certainty that prayer plays some role in it. Prayer is our means of communicating with God, but it’s also a form of understanding ourselves, what we want from our relationship with God, and how we rededicate ourselves to our faith. If you don’t have much experience of praying outside of the church or the classroom, try making it a more daily occurrence. It can be as simple as reciting already-written prayers as a form of a mantra to help you focus your attention on God, or you can pray in your own words and thoughts about the challenges, tests, and wishes that you have for that day.
Love thy neighbor
Even those of us who have lived through a variety of hardships are where we are today in part due to the time, effort, and resources that other people put into us. As such, one way to embody the spirit of togetherness that is the cornerstone of our faith is to make sure that you give something back, as well. This doesn’t have to be anything too formal or grand. Simply find a small way every day to help. It doesn’t have to be those close to you, either. If you find the opportunity to help a stranger in an organic moment of good faith, then you should take it, providing that it’s safe. You can embody your faith in how you help your fellow man.
Study about your religion
The way you choose to study your religion is up to you. You can start to do it by yourself with daily reading, videos, and online courses. There are many helpful resources and useful references out there. If you are not a fan of online learning, you can attend church, where there are groups and this will make the learning process more like an experience. For example, you can try youth ministry group games for making the process a lot more interactive and engaging. This way you can also be a part of your community, but the way you choose to learn is your decision.
Make giving a part of your life
No one can tell you that it’s not enough for you to do what good you can in little ways each and every day. However, if you feel like you can do much more, that you have the time and energy, and resources to spare, then you can dedicate yourself to your community in much bigger ways. For instance, you can look at local nonprofits that are looking for help or charitable efforts such as fundraisers to lend your skills and time to. Even something as simple as making a regular charitable donation or donating blood routinely can help you feel a lot more connected to not only your faith but also to your fellow man.
Take time to listen and to speak
You can be generous with your time and your actions, but it can be of much more profound impact to those around you if you are generous with your attention. Faith does prescribe sinful behavior, but being able to listen without judgment is one of the best ways to show a Christian sense of charity and patience and to open the door to others towards a path that will help them. What’s more, the Bible encourages us to be “slow to speak,” which means we don’t react immediately when something doesn’t agree with us or our faith, but instead to find the best way to share what we have learned through our faith.
Take lessons from the Bible
Though faith is multifaceted and we tend to live it in a variety of ways, there’s no denying that the Word of God as written in the Bible is a core foundation of faith for many of us. From it, we can go on to develop a more personal connection with our faith, but we should start from that one Word that ties us. As such, you can find a role for faith in your life by taking the time to study the Bible. Reading a passage then talking with your minister about it or looking online at Bible study sites can help you develop a much better understanding of it, from which you can better speak for it to others, as well.
Study the foundation of your faith
Getting to learn more about the Bible, developing a better knowledge of scripture, and how to apply it to your daily life can be a great way to bolster your connection with your faith and give it a more prominent role in your life. However, some people are inherently intellectual and like to grapple with the subjects that are important to them in a much deeper way, still. To that end, you might want to consider looking at a religious degree program. Learning more about theology, the philosophy of religion and the history of ministry can help you develop a much deeper understanding of your faith and can help you find a position as an authority in spiritual matters in your community.
Wear your faith courageously
A lot of people who have faith at their heart will recognize that today is a much less spiritual time than we’ve lived through before or, at the very least, religion doesn’t play as much of a role in the spirituality of others. However, if you do believe, it is part of your obligation to God that you do what you can to spread the word to those who are able to hear and accept it. Even if it may not be as fashionable as it once was, you should consider wearing your faith on your sleeve, communicating about its impact on you to those who are willing to listen. There are undoubtedly going to be those who can’t connect with that at all, but if you can reach even one person, it can be a profoundly positive experience.
Fight the lure of materialism
There are different denominations with different feelings on the importance of material possessions but there is no way to read the teachings of Jesus without realizing that materialism is a barrier to both a better connection with God and self-satisfaction. You don’t have to live as an ascetic, but taking on a few minimalist traits can help you find yourself far less tied down by a need for physical possessions and can help you develop better priorities that are more in line with your faith.
Be involved with your church beyond Sunday
If you are a member of a religious organization, ministry, or church, then it is important to know that they do so much more than gathering every Sunday. As such, you may find that the role of God in your life can be in helping others spread the word. Not everyone has the right temperament to speak about God to others, but you can instead spend your time volunteering at your church. This can involve helping it get organized to provide the services to the community that it does every day, or getting involved with church efforts in the local community.
Get involved in faith groups online
Just as the church does more than meeting every Sunday, the faith is more than just your own church. You can play an important role in helping others develop their connections with God, as well, and you can use modern technology to do it. As much as it can be a distraction, the internet can also be a tool for you and your faith. Look for religious discussion groups online and start to make connections with those on them. There are plenty of people who, for one reason or another, might not have the ability to spend time at church, and, for them, connecting with others who share their faith online might be the closest thing that they can get to it. There are even faith-based social media websites that can help you develop closer connections to people who have similar beliefs to you.
Consider devoting your time to God
Finding the role that faith has in your life is, in part, about discovering how much time, energy, and will that you are willing to sacrifice. It is a sacrifice, as pursuing your faith isn’t always the path that also leads to the most personal gratification. However, if you find that nothing else you do feels like enough to show your devotion to your faith, then you might want to look at training to become a minister, a pastor, or to play some other direct role in the religious organization that you are a member of. Of course, there are be restrictions on how much you can do based on what denomination you are a member of and their own rules, but you can always look into the possibility.
It’s an entirely personal choice to find where your faith fits in your life. If none of the suggestions above work for you, then you may need to keep looking.