Beginning To Grow

When a baby is born, that child starts the journey of life. In order for the baby to grow up to be a mature and healthy adult it must have nourishment, build nurturing relationships, learn from its parents and experience many other things.

Becoming a Christian is starting the journey of spiritual life. What does the word spiritual mean? The word spiritual means those things having to do with God, His character, and His desires. The word spiritual refers to a Christian who is living a moral life empowered and guided by the Holy Spirit that causes one to love God by pleasing Him and to love others by putting them ahead of oneself.

Jesus was talking to a Jewish religious leader one night and said to him, “You must be born again.” This statement was really puzzling to the man. What Jesus meant is that a person who becomes a Christian has been born again…spiritually (See John 3:1-8). This means that one is then able to understand spiritual things, for example, the truth about God and the truth that is found in the Bible, God’s Word. Through this new spiritual birth one becomes a Christian (See Ephesians 2:4-5; 1 Peter 1:23). But that is only the beginning!

Now that you have become a Christian you have joined other Christians who are “on the journey” toward spiritual maturity or “growing up” as a Christian. This journey is not a sprint but rather a life-long marathon. There are many blessings along the way, but you will only reach your final destination when you see your heavenly Father, God, in heaven one day.

While there are many things you need that help you grow spiritually as a Christian, here are three things that you can start doing now:

1. Seek Spiritual Friendships & Relationships With Other Christians By Joining A Local Church

You will find it very beneficial to spend a lot of time with other Christians with whom you can build meaningful and nurturing friendships and relationships (See Acts 2:42, 46-47; Colossians 3:15-17; Hebrews 10:23-25). They can help you grow spiritually by sharing their Christian life experiences with you; encouraging you on your spiritual journey; supporting you when you are going through tough times, etc.

How do you do this?

  • Join a small-group Bible study at a local church and be faithful in attending and participating in all activities.
  • Be faithful in attending worship services and taking notes of the pastor’s message and applying the spiritual truth you have learned to your life.
  • Find a long-time Christian to be your mentor and to teach you about living the Christian life.

What else should you know?

While relationships with other Christians is important for spiritual growth, always keep your eyes on Jesus as your Supreme Model for living the Christian life and not on another person.

2. Seek Spiritual Food To Nourish Yourself

To grow as a Christian you have to take in nourishment…spiritual nourishment. This may be reading the Bible, God’s Word – the best method – (See Joshua 1:8; Psalm 119:1-11; 2 Timothy 3:16 -17); attending a small-group Bible study; participating in a worship service and hearing the pastor’s message; reading books by Christian authors; listening to Christian teachers and preachers on the radio, TV, etc. By doing these things you are feeding yourself spiritual food.

How do you do this?

  • Set aside a time on a regular basis where you sit down and read a small portion of the Bible. A good place to start is with the book of John and also reading one chapter a day in the book of Proverbs.
  • Think about what you have just read in the Bible and how it applies to your life.
  • Set your mind to obey what you have just learned from God’s Word.

What else should you know?

While learning how to “feed yourself” with spiritual food is important for spiritual growth, always ask questions of a pastor, Bible teacher or Christian mentor to be sure that you have a correct understanding of these spiritual things.

3. Seek Spiritual Closeness With Your Heavenly Father

Spiritual growth comes when you pray. Praying is just talking with God, your heavenly Father, as you would talk with your earthly father or a close friend. Praying should be done on a regular basis and any other time you feel there a need to speak with God (See Psalm 145:1-3; Mark 1:35; Luke 11:1-4; 18:1; Philippians 4:6-7; 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18; 1 John 1:8-9).

How do you do this?

Set aside a time on a regular basis where you will sit down and spend time talking to God, your heavenly Father, in prayer. Here is a good order to follow when you pray:

  1. praise God by letting Him know how much you value Him and of His worthiness to be honored;
  2. think of any sins you may have committed and then ask God to forgive you of those sins;
  3. think of all the things in your life that you are thankful for and then thank God for them;
  4. think of the needs that other people have and ask God to meet those needs;
  5. think of those things that you need in your life and ask God to meet those needs; and
  6. ask your heavenly Father to respond to all the requests you have just made according to His desires and not your own, concluding your prayer in Jesus name.

What else should you know?

While learning how to pray and spending time with God is important for spiritual growth, always remember that your desires are not always what are best for you, but God knows what is best for you and will always respond to your prayers accordingly.

Please contact a pastor should you have questions about spiritual growth at 830-625-0267.