Growing Up

When my son was little, he got into Hasbro’s line of Galactic Heroes Star Wars figures (with some help from his father, of course). I think he had his first figures before he could walk and talk. They were cute, fun to play with and didn’t have any small pieces to choke on (an ever-present concern of all new parents).

Before he was three he could tell you the names of more Star Wars characters than anyone other than die-hard Star Wars fans. He had to know a character’s name if he had the figure of it. It was his quest.

Then he grew older. He started being able to be trusted playing with my Star Wars figures (though I’ve lost quite a few pieces along the way). Now his Galactic Heroes are relegated for his brother to play with (though he’s willing to still play with them–he just doesn’t want them for presents anymore as they’re for little kids).  Now he wants toys more fitting of a five-year old. So he’s graduated to the larger Clone Wars line of figures. He got a few from friends for his birthday last summer, so we allowed him to “graduate.” I’m sure he’ll see a few more figures at Christmas (in fact, I’m pretty sure of it).

Christians are supposed to be the same way: we’re supposed to graduate to the next level of fai

th at some point in our lives. Actually, at several points–it should be an on-going process. The writer of Hebrews shares, “You have been believers so long now that you ought to be teaching others. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the basic things about God’s word. You are like babies who need milk and cannot eat solid food. For someone who lives on milk is still an infant and doesn’t know how to do what is right. Solid food is for those who are mature, who through training have the skill to recognize the difference between right and wrong (Hebrews 5:12-14).”

We are meant to grow spiritually. But all too often, we in the church get stuck with playing spiritual Galactic Heroes. We don’t progress and grow up. We become too comfortable with where we’re at, afraid to grow and become “big kids.” My son sometimes says he doesn’t want to grow up. He’s afraid of the responsibility and the “childish” things he’ll miss out on. But he doesn’t have a choice. His body will grow whether he wants to or not.

Christians, however, have a choice. We can stay as infants, or we can grow. Churches get held back by too many infants. Ministry thrives where there are spiritual adults. (Of course, adults need to raise up new children, help them mature into adolescence and become adults–all parts of the process need to be present.) Is it time for you to put away your childish toys and find some that are for bigger kids?

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~ by Dave on December 22, 2009.

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