It’s finally autumn! I love fall. It’s seriously one of my favorite seasons. Hoodie and jeans weather! Fire-pits and hot apple cider! Pumpkin pie versus apple pie! Seriously, I love this season!
But…Nothing tells you that your children are growing like the start of a new season. I’ve noticed my five-year-old apparently grew four inches this year, as her pants from last year are at her calves now. I’ve also noticed my boys looking a little more mature, a little bit older. But nothing makes you notice how old your baby is like watching him try to walk in pants and shoes!
Make them stop… no, not really. Ok, maybe… put a brick on their heads… I’m always telling them to stop growing. But then I tell them, never mind keep growing. I really do want them to grow, spread their wings and fly… and also come home to visit mom every once in a while.
Could you actually imagine what life would be like if they did stop growing? I mean what if I had a five-year-old forever. School would get pretty boring. Her drive for excitement would be redundant. Life would eventually get stagnant.
What if I had a one-year old forever? Diapers for life… NOOOOOOOOO!!!!! He’d never learn to talk! He might not ever learn to walk.
I love watching them grow. I know each stage is important and the goal is lifelong learners!
I would never actually want to hold my children back from growing. I want them to grow- physically, emotionally, and spiritually. And though, eventually they will stop growing physically, I pray they never stop growing spiritually.
But an honest question- Am I as diligent about my own growth as theirs?
As their mom and teacher, I am often looking for resources and advice to help them grow in faith. I am intentional about finding them biblically sound material. Every morning I make them read their Bibles. Every evening, we make them pray out-loud. I try to find books, television shows, and movies to encourage their faith.
I notice when they seem to know all the answers, but do not understand how to apply it.
My goal with parenting is 100% to have six more souls in heaven.
Do I put this much effort into my spiritual growth? Or am I ok with being five forever?
I’ve heard it said, “If you stop growing, you’re dying.” Now there’s a harsh reality. If you are not growing in relationship with God, you are dying.
Guys, I have felt both extremes of this… and recently too.
I really think when people come to Christ, they imagine it like a mountain. I’ve reached the top and it’s all downhill from here. Well, that’s not a fair picture… at all. Faith more like a rollercoaster, with twists and turns, scary parts and thrilling parts, slow parts and fast parts. But the important part of the ride is that we don’t get off. However, equally as important, we don’t push the pause button and refuse to move.
We can’t be stagnant in our relationship with God. We must be diligent about growing.
Think about it- If I let my relationship with my husband go cold, we would be having some serious marital problems. We wouldn’t know each other. We wouldn’t be happy with each other. We would stop caring about the other person’s wellbeing. Relationships take work. And just like any other relationship- we must put forth the effort to grow. We cannot stop growing, because then we are dying.
If you are reading this and wondering whether or not you are growing or dying- let me tell you I’ve been there. Pray! Look up, talk to God. Find a time everyday to spend with Him. It doesn’t have to be first thing in the morning, but that is what tends to work best for many. Open your Bible. Surround yourself with people who will point you to God, pray for you, and help you grow.
If you are reading this and thinking of a friend, family member, or loved one who you fear is not growing, pray for them. Be intentional about cultivating a relationship with them. Be a role-model. The best thing we can do for those who seem lost, is be real. People don’t relate to your perfect social media page; they relate to you when you share real, honest life-moments. We all sin. We all fall short. But because of Jesus Christ whose blood covers us, we can live in His grace!
“but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.”
2 Peter 3:18