This book has really been hitting home for me. I am passionate for Jesus but without the spiritual disciplines I cannot keep that passion always burning. The following was especially helpful from the book:
So many professing Christian are so spiritually undisciplined that they seem to have little fruit and power in their lives. I've seen men and women who discipline themselves very little "for the purpose of godliness." I've seen Christians who are faithful to the church of God, who frequently demonstrate genuine enthusiasm for the things of God, and who dearly love the Word of God, trivialize their effectiveness for the Kingdom of God through lack of discipline. Spiritually they are a mile wide and an inch deep. There are no deep, time-worn channels of communing discipline between them and God. They have dabbled in everything but disciplined themselves in nothing.
Consider the people who will work hard at learning to play an instrument, knowing that it takes years to acquire the skills, who will practice hard to lower their golf score or to improve their sports performance, knowing it takes years to become proficient, who will discipline themselves throughout their career because they know it takes sacrifice to succeed. These same people will give up quickly when they find the Spiritual Disciplines don't come easily, as though becoming like Jesus was not supposed to take much effort.
The undisciplined are like the playwright George Kaufman, who was enduring a sales pitch from a gold-mine promoter. The salesman was praising the productivity of the mine in hopes of persuading Kaufman to buy shares in it. "Why, it's so rich you can pick up the chunks of gold from the ground."
"Do you mean," asked Kaufman, "I'd have to bend over?"
The gold of Godliness isn't found on the surface of Christianity. It has to be dug from the depths with the tools of the Disciplines. But for those who persevere, the treasures are more than worth the troubles.