“MATURITY: IT TAKES TIME BUT HOW MUCH? : Growing in maturity requires us to make some decisions,
“The Bible makes it very clear that there can be a point in the life of every believer where he or she consistently responds to things from God’s perspective. That doesn’t mean absolute sinless perfection—that only comes once we’re in heaven. What it means is that whatever comes our way, including our stumbles, we will respond in “the way God would have us respond simply because we have the mind of Christ.
But how long does it take? How much time do most of us need to spend in the faith before we reach that level of maturity? Well, in some ways that depends on us.
One of the things I tell people in our church membership class is that there is a simple equation when it comes to getting from where we are now to where we want to be, and it’s this: Rate multiplied by time equals distance. In other words, the faster we travel toward a destination, the less time it takes us to get there. If I get in my car and head for a spot in downtown at the same time someone else starts walking for the same place, I’m going to get there a lot faster. In fact, I’ll probably have had lunch, headed back home, and gone to bed by the time they get downtown.
I’ve seen the relevance of that illustration in people I’ve known who have been coming to church for years but who aren’t any closer to spiritual maturity than when they first started coming. They got saved, started coming to church every time the doors were open, attended every fellowship and Bible study available—and yet they’re still not downtown yet. And why? Because they’re still crawling when they should have been walking or even running years ago.
God’s goal for every believer is to conform us to the image of His Son, and that requires time. But that doesn’t mean we are to just sit around waiting for it to happen. It requires the proper use of our time.
The question each believer needs to ask is, “What am I doing with the time God has given me to maximize my spiritual maturity?” If we are doing the basics God asks of us—such as reading His written Word and learning through the Holy Spirit to apply it to day-to-day life— then we are proactively making progress toward spiritual maturity But if we never move beyond “that first stage in our spiritual development, we can’t expect God to just magically move us there.
Growing in maturity requires us to make some decisions, the most important of which is to grow in our relationship with Him.”
vision, purpose, destiny,