“How to become a Spiritual Grown-up”
In order to make our way in the world and become more Christ-like adults, we need to be continually growing in mind, heart and soul. In doing this, we benefit from a life of increased faith, and are able to help others. And this pleases God. But there is a method to achieving maturity, and it comes with a price; time, discipline and perseverance.
I recall professors saying that we do not learn by “osmosis” and that sleeping with a text under our pillow will not help on an exam. Learning takes time, and though time itself is passive, we are the ones who make it active, by harnessing it according to our will. How? By parsing it out, based on our priorities. God gave us 24 hours in a day to accomplish all that we need to and then some, but he left us to carve the pie, so to speak, and determine who or what gets the biggest piece.
After the concept of time, there is discipline in the sense of self-control. By controlling the time we are given, we knowingly and willfully schedule our routine. Time is always a challenge for us, with 101 things vying for our attention, which is why it takes an act of the will to set aside time on purpose; like spending an hour with God each day, reading the Word and praying.
Setting aside time and taking control are the first steps toward maturity, but there is a third step; perseverance. Perseverance is the decision in action; long-term. I can decide to exercise each day, and set an alarm for 5:30 a.m., but if I do not follow through and exercise, it is of no effect.
The Mature Christian Reflects the Goodness of God.
Maturity is the ripe fruit of a developed faith, and to be sober-minded, calm, and self-controlled are hallmarks of choice fruit. God has provided all the tools for becoming a mature Christian, including the perfect example of Jesus Christ, and desires for us to be weaned off the spiritual bottle and begin eating solid food. It is what we do with these provisions, that will determine our growth toward becoming spiritual grown-ups.