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Someone once asked a very insightful question:
"I wonder how old you would be if you didn't know how old you were?"
How true is that? Don't we all know people who look young on the outside, but you would think they were extreme senior citizens by the way they act. Then there are others who seem old by number of years, but they are still as full of life as a child on a summer's day.
Did you know that every Christian has two ages? One is measured by trips around the sun, and the other is measured by the standard set by the Son. The difference is that growing old is mandatory, growing up is not. That's why we have folks who have been saved for years, but still act like spiritual babies. They were glad to get a free ticket to heaven, but getting off the bottle and out of diapers has been a real struggle.
One of the main things that makes the devil's job a whole lot easier is believers who refuse to grow up. To look at it another way - here is a personal ad that I think Satan would put out today:
Wanted: Spiritual Toddlers
POD (Prince of Darkness) seeks PIB (Permanently Immature Believers) to serve as underground servants for his kingdom. Must know very few verses by heart, pray only when in trouble, consider happiness a main goal, are bickering, jealous, and quarrelsome, infrequently attend church, rarely tithe, rarely study Scripture, and above all must not share the gospel with others.
Growing up in the faith is a big deal with God- listen to the way Paul put it:
Dear brothers and sisters, when I was with you I couldn't talk to you as I would to mature Christians. I had to talk as though you belonged to this world or as though you were infants in the Christian life. I had to feed you with milk and not with solid food, because you couldn't handle anything stronger. And you still aren't ready, for you are still controlled by your own sinful desires. You are jealous of one another and quarrel with each other. Doesn't that prove you are controlled by your own desires? You are acting like people who don't belong to the Lord. (I Corinthians 3:1-3)
Got milk? If you have only been a Christian for a short time, then good for you. It shows you want to grow. But if you trusted Christ some time ago, your diet needs to change! It isn't just about how much you read the Bible or pray- that's just the beginning. The point is that all that studying and talking to God is changing you into a person who looks and acts a lot like Christ. If your friends and family get a clear picture of Jesus when they see you, then you've probably been chowing down on some serious spiritual sirloins!
So since you really don't know how old you are spiritually, how old do you think you are? How ridiculous an adult in diapers looks to us- how much more silly does a supposedly 'older' believer sucking on a Biblical bottle look to Jesus?
So if you are ready to stop ordering off the kids' menu, here are a couple suggestions:
Of course there are many other ways to grow, but if you even apply a few of these habits to your life- pretty soon you'll be wiping off the milk moustache and chewing on the delicious delicacies of maturity meat.
In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God's word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! (Hebrews 5:12)
Dare 2 Share is a church assisting ministry that provides resources for youth leaders and equips teens to relationally and relentlessly reach their generation for Christ. Over 1,400 of these resources are provided completely FREE! D2S also conducts nationwide youth evangelism training conferences. The events are structured for students in junior high and high school, ranging from 12 to 18 years old. Regardless of gender or denomination, D2S teaches from a Christian perspective. D2S is based in Denver, Colorado and has impacted the lives of more than 300,000 teens since 1991.
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