Q. 1. I heard that there is a Bible verse that lists the steps that are necessary for spiritual formation. Do you know that Bible passage?
A. 1. The Bible passage that you are referring to is 2 Timothy 3:16-17 where it states: "All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correcting, and for training in righteousness, so that everyone who belongs to God may be proficient, equipped for every good work.
Q. 2. So how can teaching, reproof, correcting and training in righteousness lead to spiritual formation?
A. 2. Each step serves its purpose. For example:
i. Teaching tells us what is right. It focuses our mind and shapes our thinking;
ii. Reproof tells us what is not right. It pricks our conscience so that we do not travel in the wrong direction;
iii. Correction tells us how to get it right. It molds our will so that we see the wisdom of God's plan; and
iv. Training shows us how to stay right, how to act more like Christ.
Q. 3. So if I go through the above steps, is this all that I need for my spiritual formation?
A. 3. God's Word, the Scriptures, is one step that leads to spiritual formation. To base one's faith on the Bible alone is like eating a cake with no icing on it. It has no flavour. It is incomplete.
Each believer needs the Church and its teachings that are found in the Catechism of the Catholic Church to guarantee the purity of the teachings, the reproof, the correcting and the training in righeteousness.
Then you need the Tradition of the Catholic Church that goes back to the days of the Apostles to ensure that the purity of its teachings has not changed over the centuries.
Finally, you need the Sacraments that Jesus gave to the Catholic Church. Without them, it is impossible to enter the eternal Kingdom of God.