Sunday, 9 September 2007

Life A-Z; G is for growth

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growth (noun): the act or process, or a manner of growing; development; gradual increase. (Dictionary.com)

And the child GREW and became STRONG in SPIRIT....(Luke 1:80a)

And the child GREW and became STRONG; He was filled with WISDOM, and the GRACE of God was upon Him (Luke 2:40)

And Jesus GREW in WISDOM and STATURE, and in FAVOUR with God and men (Luke 2:52

And the boy Samuel continued to GROW in STATURE and in FAVOUR with the Lord and men (1st Samuel 2:26)

All Scriptures from the New International Version (NIV), capitals mine.

Hmm, G was a difficult one to get. At first, I couldn't think of anything that started with G then thanks to all the suggestions from my fellow bloggers, I had too many too choose from but when the word growth dropped in my spirit, I just asked the Lord to reveal to me what He wanted to teach me.

Growth...........as I celebrate another birthday in a few weeks, I am undergoing a process of self-evaluation. I'm asking myself questions like; Where am I now? Where am I going? How have I changed? from last year, 5 years back? What is God saying? I think the basic question is; Am I growing? I know I'm adding another year to my life but am I growing spiritually, mentally and emotionally? I think I've passed the stage for physically because any increase now will be horizontal and not vertical!!!

The verses above allude to John the Baptist, Jesus and Samuel. Not only did they grow physically (in stature), the Bible also records that they grew in the intangible (Spirit, wisdom and favour). I love the definition of growth as a process of gradual increase and development. We give birth to babies and they grow through different stages of life until they become fully grown adults.

So am I growing? I think yes, in some areas but I know there is still a lot of work in this heart of mine for the Holy Spirit to work on. Am I growing in wisdom? I shouldn't be making the same poor decisions I was making last year, 10 years ago. Am I growing in the fruits of the Spirit? Am I more loving, more kind, more peaceful, more gentle, more self-controlled, more faithful, more patient and more gentle (Gal 5:22)? I think the reason why these characteristics are fruits of the Spirit and not gifts are because we are expected to grow in them. A fruit does not appear overnight but manifests when a tree has been cultivated in the right environment for fruit development. The same with us, as our spirits are cultivated in the right environment by living and being led by the Spirit of God we also will manifest ALL the fruits of the Holy Spirit.

As I was meditating on this topic, the Holy Spirit revealed something to me. For proper growth of any living thing, adequate nourishment is required. Food is to our physical body what the Word of God and communion with the Holy Spirit is to our spirit. Remember that who we really are is spirit but encased in our natural bodies or flesh. When we become born again, our spirits receive life from God. It is with our Spirits we interact with the GodHead but the thing is that we tend to forget that our spirits also require nourishment. We feed our natural bodies, exercise and take care of it, giving it what it requires for growth but our spirits are not nourished so does not grow.

This is why sometimes we struggle with temptation because our flesh is stronger because it has been fed better. The word tells us that John, Jesus and Samuel grew both physically and spiritually so we need both to be effective in the ministries we have been anointed for. This is why although physically Samuel was at a young age, his spirit was mature enough to handle hearing things from God even when there were people older than Him (Eli and his sons) present (1st Samuel 3).

When we choose to grow spiritually, God can reveal more to us and anoint us to do even greater things for Him. We need to desire it. It's no longer enough to have known the Lord for x number of years but have we grown? Can we truly say we know more about Him now than we knew then? Paul addresses the church in Corinth..Brothers, I could not address you as spiritual but as worldly-mere infants in Christ. I gave you milk and not solid food, for you were not ready for it (1st Corinthians 3:1-2a). Physically, it would be strange to see an adult existing on a diet of milk only. So also, we should desire the solid food of God. This is someone described by Paul in 2nd Timothy 2:15 as ...a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. Also, the stronger our spirits are, the better it is able to renew (reprogramme) our minds (our thinking patterns, process) to no longer be conformed to this world but to be TRANSFORMED to the way God wants us to think (Romans 12:2).

My primary goal now is to grow spiritually. I know there is so much God has in store for us if we are willing for Him to use us. I think I'm getting a bit tired of this milk and need some spiritual 'chicken wings'.

Remain blessed and highly favoured

Me

6 comments:

Sisbee said...

I'm so with you on growth. I know I have grown considerably in my soul! The way one reason's is affected by what they take in, just as physical food affects the body, spiritual food affects the spirit man and soul! Those wings you desire will come!

Rinsola said...

Sisbee said it all. But trust me, you sure are growing, and by His grace, you would get to the height of where He wants you. Have a funfilled and fufilled week

Believer said...

@sisbee:Amen, have a blessed week. Thanks for your comment.

@rinsola:Have a blessed week too. Thanks for your comment.

Allied said...

AMEN! AMAEN! AMAEN.

It is so amazing when you write things i am studying or praying for. God is wonderful. The topic of growth is one dear to me.

I am also adding another year to my age in a couple of weeks and i started to reflex on my life. I am not satisfied with my spitiual growth. I am going at a snail pace.

I also want spiritual 'chicken wings'.

Jem said...

very very true. Spiritual growth is very important and some people think its enough to just believe in Jesus and everything will be groovy. No, God wants us to get off the milk like babies and start chewing meat ... the digestion and understanding of great spiritual truths. amen

Believer said...

@allied:My sis, the Lord is faithful and as you desire to grow, He will surely lead and guide you. Remain blessed

@jem:True word! Remain blessed