How Does Spiritual Maturity Impact My SDI 2.0?

How Does Spiritual Maturity Impact My SDI 2.0?

Over the past 10 years Consentia Group has assessed and trained more than 12000 people with the SDI 2.0.  Our work has been primarily with Christian ministries that desire to connect the experience with the SDI with their faith in Jesus Christ.  As people of the “Book” we are drawn to connect what we learn from the SDI instrument to our faith and how our faith brings about the transformation in our lives.  Consentia Group is committed to advancing accurate and helpful information to help you do that effectively.

Each time we complete a training we discover that there are faulty thoughts and conclusions that arise.  This blog post will attempt to identify some of the errors we often hear, as well as share some important truths that you may find useful to your spiritual development.  This blog is a little longer than usual, so I encourage you to read to the end.  I think you will find it rewarding and challenging.

The SDI 2.0 is an incredible reliable and valid instrument for understanding yourself and others.  It was never intended for spiritual development and is not a Christian tool.  It was designed to help people accomplish more in the workplace by helping people work together with less conflict.  It is highly successful and used widely to accomplish this.  It has helped businesses, non-profits, and yes, ministries around the world.  But there is so much more!

As a theologically trained minister of the Gospel, I couldn’t help but research the connections between the three motivations of the SDI 2.0 and what the Scripture teaches about the soul and its needs.  Throughout the centuries, teachers in the church have identified soul needs and have developed language for discipleship and transformation (sanctification).  I was drawn to the writings of Ignatius of Loyola who was a priest in Spain at the beginning of the 16th century.  He identified three “powers of the soul” that appeared to correspond with the three motivations of the SDI 2.0 (acceptance/BLUE, significance/RED, and security/GREEN).  He also called these soul needs the “three passions of the soul”.  His conviction was that until those needs were fully met in Christ, believers would not live sanctified lives because they sought after other substitutes that never satisfy.  This truth resonated with me.  I found the same iteration of this truth amongst others like Neil Anderson.  I’ve written extensively on the three passions of the soul if you want to learn more about how the SDI 2.0 and discipleship intersect (Three Passions of the Soul Book).

These three passions (motivations) shape our personalities.  We were created with these needs in the Garden of Eden and God met our needs fully.  But the Fall resulted in mankind looking for substitutes to fill these needs.  Scripture often calls these substitutes idols.  Christ came to restore man (salvation) to their garden identity.  When we place our faith in Christ we are adopted as God’s child with all the benefits and promises.  However, we struggle to live out the life that is ours in Christ.  By abiding in Christ’s love, we can grow in our sanctification and be changed (John 15:9).

We need to be careful about the assumptions we make about the SDI 2.0 and our faith.  Wrong assumptions and beliefs can take us down difficult paths.  Here are some wrong beliefs that have been voiced in our trainings recently:

  • My anchor (MVS) will move as I mature in my Christian walk.
  • You will become more effective in your MVS as you mature in Christ.
  • I used to be more BLUE, but as I have grown in Christ and been healed from my wounds, I have become more RED.

All of these statements indicate a misunderstanding of the relationship between spiritual maturity and the SDI 2.0.  Our Motivational Value System (MVS) is a fairly stable way we approach our world.  We know this from 50 years of research.  That is why it is likened to an “anchor”.  It represents what is most important to us and how we see the world.  As we mature in Christ it is best not to think about how we move our anchor, but rather how our soul needs represented by our anchor is met.

No MVS is better than another so moving the anchor is not a goal.  Your anchor is the unique way God has made you for His glory.  He has wired you to make a unique contribution to his plan.  Your MVS is to be celebrated as much as your spiritual gifts.  Together, we make up the body of Christ just as the Spirit of God intended.

There are things that change when we grow in spiritual maturity in Christ.  Here are some things we would anticipate when we are saturated and changed by the gospel.

  • You will use your MVS to glorify God rather than yourself. The soul that is not transformed by the gospel uses their MVS to achieve greater acceptance, security, and significance from others.  This can be draining as we strive for our self-worth, rather than believing the gospel which tells us these needs are fully met in Christ.  We can trust Him alone.  As a RED I can now grow my church for God’s glory rather than doing it to elevate my significance in the eyes of my community.  As a BLUE I can help others because they are valued by God rather than worrying about whether or not people will like me.  As a GREEN I am able to develop an excellent plan to take advantage of an opportunity God has called us to without fear.  You are focused on obedience rather than security.  When our soul needs are met in Christ, we are freer to obediently and joyfully use our motivation for the Kingdom of God.
  • You will not overdo your strengths as often. Overdone strengths occur because we are striving to meet our soul needs.  Our soul needs are fuel of overdone strengths.  We will continue to pursue our motivational drive and see them as important, but we will maintain greater self-control.  As a RED, I still want to take advantage of every opportunity, but I will not be fueled by the need to be successful in such a way that I will overdo my strengths.  The Spirit filled person will hear the voice of the Spirit that whispers in your ear that you are a child of God and all your needs are met (Romans 8:16).
  • You will identify and address your hard heart as you grow in Christ. Hard hearts (shell of the soul) are caused by things like a wounded heart, lies we believe, and family origins.  These issues can keep a hold on our lives and keep us from changing until we find our soul needs met in Christ.  He enables us to release the strongholds as we embrace Christ as all sufficient.
  • Maturity in Christ enables us to discern the leading of the Spirit from our MVS instinct. As a BLUE my instinct is almost always to avoid hardship on others.  As a RED, my instinct is almost always to do what it takes to win.  As a GREEN, my instinct is almost always to wait and research before moving forward.  As a HUB my instinct is to keep changing directions as more information is available.  Yet the Spirit of God is speaking and often is leading us differently from our “instinct”.  Maturity in Christ enables us to discern the difference between our instinct and God’s leading by His Spirit.
  • Maturity in Christ will not change our MVS but will create in us humility. We will recognize and appreciate the full body of Christ and how we work together for His glory.  Serving together will lead to less conflict and greater understanding.

Your MVS stays the same!  But our MVS is sanctified by the gospel.  Our behaviors change because we have been changed from the inside out.  Jesus taught us that if you want to see the entire cup clean, we need to first clean the inside and the outside will get clean all by itself (Matthew 23:26).  The work of the gospel is in our soul.  Jesus came to rescue and restore that which was lost.

If you would like to learn more about how our lives are transformed by the gospel from the inside out, you can read Three Passions of the Soul or Soul Discipleship.  These two resources will help you to connect your SDI 2.0 with the discipleship process.

Bruce Terpstra

Our President, Dr. Bruce Terpstra, has 36 years of pastoral ministry experience. He is a veteran of 17 years in denominational leadership and developed more than 70 new churches in the New York metro area and has given oversight to almost 400 pastors. He holds a doctorate in Leadership Development and is also the founder of 3KeyCoaching and the author of Three Passions of the Soul.