BY REV. DR. PHILIP CRAIG
Greater Springfield Community Church
Scripture: 2 Peter 3:18: But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him, be glory both now and forever! Amen.”
When a person grows chronologically, but not psychologically, an unbalance begins to develop. It is a crying shame when people do not act their age. I have witnessed some 40-, 50- and even some 60-year-old adults who possess the mindset of persons who are still in their teenage years. I am not talking about mental illness. I am talking about people who choose not to mature intellectually, while their physical body continues to grow older.
This also happens in the spiritual realm. Peter is speaking of being prepared for the day of judgment by living a righteous life and growing in the grace and knowledge of God. Paul says it this way when speaking to the church of Corinth in 1 Corinthians 13:11, “When I was a child, I spake like a child. I understood as a child, I thought as a child. But when I became a man, I put away childish things.”
Our actions rely on how we perceive things. Watching a person who has been in church for most of their adult life possessing a spirit that is clearly not connected to anything that Jesus represents is a bit baffling. This lets me know that there are people who have accepted Jesus as their personal savior, but never received instruction on how they are to grow in Christ. And because of this, they stay immature in the faith, and will not unfold their full potential as a result. So, allow me to provide three points that will help persons grow in God’s grace and help them to achieve a better relationship with Jesus in order to live a purpose-filled life.
Firstly, we are responsible for renewing our mind as stated in Romans 12:2. Although God saves us, He doesn’t replace our brain. In denying God’s will by being disobedient and rebellious, we have created many unhealthy patterns and habits in our lives. Therefore, we should meditate on the word of God and apply the Bible’s truths to our lives on a daily basis, thereby erasing the old mindset and obtaining the mind of Christ as Paul mentions in 1 Corinthians 2:16.
Second, we must do something that most people don’t like to do—and that is admit our failures and assume responsibility for what we have done. When we justify or make excuses for our sins, we delay our spiritual growth. However, when we confess our sins and failures, we are admitting our faults and realizing that it has no place in our life with Christ.
Last, but not least, we must take action after our confession—which is also known as repentance. Repentance is taking your confession to the next level. This is more than just acknowledging your wrongdoing. Repentance is when we make an about-face and begin to walk in the opposite direction from our past mistakes and sins.
Paul says it best in Acts 26:20: “They should repent and turn to God and demonstrate their repentance by their deeds.” As you grow in God’s grace, you will also grow in God’s favor. God bless you!
177-06 129th Ave, Jamaica NY 11434
Email Pastor Craig at Phil.firstname.lastname@example.org