You grew spiritually today. Each day, you and I either grow closer to God or we grow further away. At times, we take one step forward, two steps backward. It was that way for the Disciples, those closest to God when He walked the Earth in the person of His Son, Jesus Christ (John 1:14). Why would we expect it to be different for us some 2,000 plus years removed from being in the direct vicinity of God in the flesh?
It Was Hard For The Disciples.
When you read the 4 Gospels, you get four human perspectives on who Jesus was and what He did, authored by 4 different writers who were each inspired by God to tell the story of when the Son left His throne to become a man (2 Timothy 3:16). Jesus, fully human, fully divine (Hebrews 2:5-18), taught and ministered to those He encountered. He watch them grow spiritually. At times they grew closer to Him; other times they moved further away. The same men who stood in awe of our Lord when he fed the 5,000 (Matthew 14:13-21), abandoned him to die alone on a cross (Mark 14:50). Talk about spiritual highs and lows…
Following Jesus Isn’t Easy.
My own experience has taught me that our individual journeys are like that. Growing spiritually doesn’t mean we just experience mountain top after mountain top. Growing in Christ means we walk through valleys, weather storms, and endure trials. Honestly, a lot of times, it seems like growing in Christ is a lot more difficult than what our church brethren advertised it to be. They made “being saved” sound like such a good thing—and IT IS—but it’s certainly no cakewalk afterwards. Following Jesus is not for the timid or faint of heart.
Marriage Isn’t Easy Either. Coincidence?
Our marriages reflect that. Getting married is a GREAT THING. But… It’s not all wine and roses or cake and ice cream. Marriage—living with another human being for eternity—can be HARD WORK. To make it real exciting, throw some kids into the mix. Just like growing in Christ is challenging, marriage is not a life for the timid or faint of heart, either. I believe it’s why the sanctity of marriage is so important in God’s economy. In so many ways, marriage is a reflection of Christ’s work, through the Holy Spirit, in us. Don’t enter into either relationship lightly. But when you do, I encourage you to do it with all abandon, living the highs and the lows to the fullest. Put the pedal to the metal.
Keeping the Faith.
Spiritual growth isn’t just an upward spiral to eternity. It comes with peaks and lows, ebbs and flow, mountains and valleys. It is through our experiences between these polar opposites that we see our faith flourish and strengthen. Ours is not intended to be a lukewarm faith encountered on a broad path. Ours is a faith experienced and lived in abundance along a narrow road.
Be faithful for He who created all things is faithful. Press On.