1 Corinthians 13:11 – When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me.
At the beginning of each of my childhood summers, my mom would take me to the mall shoe store and purchase a pair of what she called “between-the-toe” sandals. It took weeks for my toes to adjust to that scratchy leather strap, but the rest of the summer they were a great fit and companions to Bible School, sticky lemonade stands, and neighborhood bike rides. At the end of each and every summer—without fail—I had outgrown those sandals, and it was time to move on to “school shoes.” Yep, new territory to be taken in the school cafeteria and on the wild playground.
I am finding the same principal to be true in my spiritual growth. How about you? Have you noticed that as we seek more time in His presence and spend more time in His word, we are not the same people we were last year? For those of you that have children, it is so easy to be aware of how quickly they grow from newborn to toddler. Isn’t it?
Physical growth can be so evident. I would like to challenge us to take a look at the visible effects of our spiritual growth. This growth really should be seen by others or at least apparent to ourselves. I have lately been using the phrase, “Oh, I don’t do that anymore.” Or whispering to myself, “I’ve outgrown that.” These declarations come to my mind when I am tempted to react like I used to in the past. It might be right before I want to share some gossip that I’m tempted to justify as “just visiting.” Or maybe when that guy cuts me off in traffic and my first reaction is not to bless him.
How about you? What have you outgrown? Could it be a certain response that in the past has always followed your spouse’s certain response? Same song, second verse. Or maybe you’ve outgrown charging that purchase you don’t have funds for? I love that God is a God of process, and just like we get excited to see the growth in our kids, He sure does delight in ours.
So how ‘bout it? Wanna move up to the next shoe size? The next pair is guaranteed to take us to new and exciting places.