Discernment: A Fresh Look at our Spiritual Lives

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Adapted from Dr. Carolyn Tennant and Dr. Joseph Girdler’s book, Keys to the Apostolic and Prophetic: Embracing the Authentic – Avoiding the Bizarre, (Louisville, KY: Meadow Stream Publishing, 2019), 154–155. 

Each new year is a time for personal evaluation. As leaders working in a five-fold ministry gifting, this checklist is a great tool to help us and our teams discern how we are doing:

» Are we scriptural, or does what we preach and teach not line up with the Bible?

» Do we confess and point to Jesus, or do we take the emphasis off Him and highlight other things instead?

» Are our prayer lives apparent and robust, or do we not care about our own time with God because we are just “too busy” with other “important” work?

» Do we evidence the fruit of the Spirit or the sins of the flesh? Are we prickly? What readily leaks out of us in stressful situations or when we don’t get our way?

» Do we live holy lives, or are we toying with various immoral behaviors or questionable ethics? Is our speech unclean; do we tell off-color jokes?

» Are we humble, preferring others above ourselves, or are we prideful, drawing attention to ourselves?

» Are we willing to suffer for Christ’s sake and pay the price that comes with our calling, or are we looking for ease?

» When we have a tough message to give from God, do we share this with pain and the fear of the Lord or with haughtiness and a judgmental spirit, evidencing a self-righteous attitude?

» Do we want to move toward unity, being peacemakers and drawing people together, or are we divisive and leave factions in our wake?

» Are we no respecter of persons, clearly loving everybody no matter our race, culture, gender, looks, health, or financial status, or do we try to get into the graces of the “right folks”?

» Through the grace of God, do we move in the gifts of the Spirit and follow His leading, or are we not sensitive to the Holy Spirit and His direction, desiring to be in personal control?

» Are we teachable and open to correction, guidance, and growth in our ministry, or are we “above” any of these things, acting as if we really don’t need anybody else telling us anything?

» Are we full of integrity, transparent, and humanly “real,” or are we masquerading, hiding our inner selves, full of deceit?

» Are we real servants to others, or do we expect to be served and honored by others?

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