Barna research suggests that most Americans consider themselves average in 7 areas of spiritual life...but most could think of no (nada, zilch, zero) areas in which they would like to improve. The article I read implied that this was a survey of "Evangelical Christians", but I coulnd't verify that this was the case.
Anyway...the survey examined 7 different aspect of spiritual development, asking respondents to rate themselves on a 5-point scale.
- Americans gave themselves highest marks for MAINTAINING HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS (48% of the respondents claimed to be 'completely/highly' develoved and 46% placing themselves 'about average').
- In the area of SERVING OTHERS, 41% claimed 'complete/high development' and 50% indicating they were 'average'.
- The areas of spirituality that ranked lowest were SHARING THEIR FAITH WITH OTHERS (53% 'average', 24% 'below average') and KNOWING THE CONTENT OF THE BIBLE (53% 'average', 26% 'below average').
However, when people were asked to name a single area in which they would like to improve, many were unable to respond.
The greatest identified spiritual need INCREASING COMMITMENT TO THE CHRISTIAN FAITH only garnered 13%, witih INCREASING BIBLE KNOWLEDGE following closely with 12%.
"The fact that so few people have thought about how they could intentionally and strategically enhance their spiritual life reminds us that spiritual growth is not a priority to most people," George Barna said. "Americans are generally satisfied with being 'average' in their spiritual maturity."
What steps are you taking to grow in spiritual maturity? Do you care?