by Dr. Charles Stanley
Tuesday December 28, 2004
The Pathway to Spiritual Growth
2 Peter 3:18
Not many people can say that on the day they were saved, someone explained the steps to spiritual growth. Unfortunately, some believers never hear how to grow. God's desire is that believers be fashioned in the likeness of Christ. But we do not grow as a Christian without taking action.
First, we are responsible for renewing our mind. (Romans 12:2) Though God saves us and gives us a new spirit, He does not give us a new brain. Our minds have many trenches that have been dug or worn by disobedience and rebellion. So we must meditate on the Bible, which is an expression of the thoughts of God. Meditating is more than reading - it involves thinking about what the words mean and applying scriptural truths. There is no way to grow spiritually without absorbing the Bible into our thinking.
A second valuable practice for our Christian walk is to be ready to admit our failures and assume responsibility for them. When we deny our sins, we delay our spiritual growth. But when we confess our failures, the opposite happens. Growth is inevitable.
The third step naturally follows the second: after confession should come repentance. This is more than acknowledging wrongdoing or promising to try harder. Repentance means that we commit to make an about-face and head in the opposite direction from our sin.
God's goal for all believers is that we become more like Christ every day. With these three practices, we will begin to grow in that direction. And the important consequence is that our relationship with God grows deeper.
Need gift ideas? The 2004 In Touch Christmas Catalog is here. Visit the In Touch online bookstore for more information.
Teen Connection is the official teen outreach of In Touch Ministries. Be sure to tell your teen about this cutting-edge web site filled with practical content for teenagers of all spiritual maturity levels. The featured interview for December is best-selling singer/songwriter Bebo Norman. Check out Teen Connection today!