Where birth occurs growth always follows.
Where birth occurs growth always follows, especially in relation to the Christian life. One might agree whole-heartedly with such a statement while the debaters will say there is the possibility that growth wouldn’t occur, which I could agree with. But one would have to admit that if growth does not occur, death would inevitably ensue. Yet you still might argue that one could be in between and not doing either, just living a stale existence, which, if I may, could be chalked up as lukewarm Christianity. Revelation 3:16 explains what Christ thinks of a lukewarm Christian; so, for the sake of argument we can conclude that it is a black and white issue, you are either living or you are dying.
As we look around ourselves, growth is a natural by-product of life in every arena. It is no different in our Christian walk. We are to be growing, learning more, and seeking to be more like Christ daily. We are to be maturing through the Word, living a life that gives all the glory to Him. The writer of Hebrews states: “12For 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. 13For everyone who partakes only of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is an infant. 14But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil.” Hebrews 5:12-14 (NASB). The writer directly states that we, like a child are to feed on the Word of God and grow in Him like a child grows physically. Such growth requires more than just our time.
Yet, for some of us Church is merely something we do on Sunday and Wednesday. We put in our time, pay our dues and go on living our life the way we want. We never make it past the fire insurance of salvation, which is not salvation at all. Such a misconception of Christianity should lead one to ask about the reality of their belief. “Do I truly understand what it means to be a Christian?” For being a Christian is more than sitting in the church. You can fill your mind with all the knowledge, you can attend every class offered, but until you move what you know from your head to believing it in your heart, you will never grow spiritually.
As I read the book of Acts recently, I came to the conclusion that I don’t believe what the Bible says. (Please hear me out before you jump to any conclusions.) If I honestly believed what the Bible said I, you, everyone, would live life very differently. Unfortunately we get caught up doing life and lose sight of the goal and forget why we are here. I have to ask myself regularly “Am I growing? Am I living a life that is an example for others to follow? Is my life different?” So I ask you: Are you growing? Are you maturing in your faith? If not, why not? Are you making the effort, or just punching the clock?
The Church, in a general sense, offers many discipleship opportunities. There is Sunday morning Bible study, fellowships, worship, service opportunities, your personal quiet time, etc. The classes offered are intended to stimulate growth in each of our lives. The subjects presented are intentional and direct. It is important to remember that these are a means to an end, not and end in themselves. The more ways you have to stay connected to God the easier it will be for you to grow in Him. Are you ready to stand up to the challenge and begin to grow in Him as you have been called to do so?