YOU NEED TOOLS, NOT RULES
Spiritual practices like giving, praying, fasting, Bible reading and worship are tools for your transformation. They are not requirements for earning God’s favor. You will not get on God’s bad side if you don’t practice them. Even where they are commanded, the God who is commanding them is the God of grace.
They are tools, not rules.
We practice these things because we are training in righteousness to be like Jesus. The generosity, self control, intimacy with God, deep faith and joy that we want are all strengthened through these practices.
God changes our hearts. We need to change our habits.
Spiritual practices (or spiritual disciplines) are merely tools for doing that. When we give, it breaks the power of selfishness in our life. Praying regularly reminds us that we are not alone and we answer to God. Fasting teaches our body that it doesn’t call the shots. Reading the Bible reshapes our thinking. Worship recalibrates our heart around God as our center.
God loves you and has given you his heart. These tools can help you align your habits with his heart. Use them that way. Don’t beat yourself (or others) up with them. They are there to help you!