Does the word “mature” scare you when it comes to your faith?
Recently I was meeting with a friend and I asked him how long he had been a Christian. He answered, “ten years – but, I’ve been a one-year-old Christian for eight of those ten years.” He went on to explain that for eight years he had not really walked with the Lord and had not grown in his faith. And that got me thinking.
How many of us are happy never growing up in our walk with Christ? How many of us are like Sir James Matthew Barrie’s fictional Peter Pan? When Sir James wrote his “fairy play” about an ageless boy, he subtitled it, “The Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up.” Does that describe your Christian life? The Christian who just wouldn’t grow up?
Like Peter Pan many of us are happy with things just the way they are. No challenges, no spiritual stress, no ministry work, no church responsibilities, and NO GROWTH. Too often we go to church to be entertained or made to feel good about ourselves and never have a thought for God’s call upon our lives. And far too many churches are happy to keep us entertained and “tipping the show” with an occasional, conscience-soothing check.
Perhaps my grown-up view of following Christ is stepping on your Peter Pan toes. I’m not sorry. The purpose of the “I’ve Been Thinking…” Blog is to challenge my readers to think about things of the Faith with a new perspective. That’s all I’m trying to do here. I’m not judging. I’m not trying to make you feel guilty. I AM trying to exert the Biblical concept of exhortation.
The Greek word for “exhort” means “to come along side and nudge.” So please consider this a friendly nudge. The New Testament writers make it abundantly clear that God’s call upon every Christian is to GROW to maturity in our faith.
As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, Ephesians 4:14,15
One of the reasons the church is becoming less and less effective in reaching the unsaved with the fantastic message of Jesus is that too many of us are sitting in the church humming a variation of the “Toys-R-Us” theme song, “I don’t want to grow up, I’m a child of the King.” We are indeed children of the King, but God never intended for us to remain children.
but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen. 2 Peter 3:18
Brethren, do not be children in your thinking; yet in evil be infants, but in your thinking be mature. 1 Corinthians 14:20
Paul writes that we should desire “meat” of the word and get off the baby “milk” of immaturity.
like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation, 1 Peter 2:2
So, how do you grow up?
For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes only of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is an infant. But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil. Hebrews 5:12–14
First, are you a Christian? Are you sure?
Do you attend a Bible believing and Bible teaching church?
Do you have a small group Bible Study?… not just for food and fellowship – but for challenge?
Do you have a spiritual mentor – Pastor, Elder, Deacon, or Bible-focused, older believer?
If you are a Bible-focused, older believer, do you have a person to mentor?
Are you praying for one?
Lastly, get out of the pew and start planting spiritual seeds and reaping spiritual crops. That’s the work of a mature follower of Christ. Perhaps it’s time for Peter Pan to grow up?!!
Think about it….