Therefore, let us move beyond the elementary teachings about Christ and be taken forward to maturity, . . . (Heb 6:1)
As a young child, when I felt powerless or frustrated by the edicts of big people, I would think, “When I get big, I’m gonna _____.” The blank was usually filled in by something like, “do whatever I want,” “eat candy for supper,” or some equally fantastic notion. I was sure I would be in complete control, perfectly happy and free of care, when I just got big enough to run my own show.
Oh, the irony!
Someone has said that we may get big enough to ask all the questions, but we’re not big enough to understand all the answers. I’ve come to accept that the vital thing is knowing The Answer. That’s the first part. The next and ongoing part is building and nurturing our relationship into a trust account. Whenever I find myself slipping into worry, or hope being eroded, I can make a withdrawal from the trust account I hold with Jesus. No matter how many withdrawals I make, His interest always more than makes up the balance.
As I look back over my grownup (relatively speaking) life, I see that getting big didn’t keep me from throwing the process into reverse from time to time.
I got smaller when I saw my problems or challenges as bigger than God’s enabling power.
I shrank when I expected God to bring about my solutions in my timing, instead of waiting for and accepting His answers.
I shriveled when I set up expectations of a trouble-free life, wondering if God had reneged on promises He clearly never made. This happened in the early years when I had little to no interest in reading the Bible. I didn’t understand then that absorbing God’s life-letter was the most significant and satisfying reading I would ever do. It put me on intimate terms with the Godhead, and has kept me there. It’s the training manual that’s always current, the truth that is completely reliable, the love-letter that both thrills and sustains my heart.
As I’ve got older, I have got bigger (let’s not count the ways!), but I’m still not BIG. I’m still growing up in the Spirit, and I will always need to. Where I’m gratefully shrinking is in retaining guilt for old mistakes, rehearsing hurt for old wounds, and self-flagellation for my failings and imperfections. My deepest desire is to grow in reliance on, trust in, constant awareness of, love and gratitude for God my Father, Jesus my Savior and His Holy Spirit, my companion and guide. Before I depart this world, though, I do want to get BIG, like this —
Bathed In Grace
Bolstered In Grief
Basking In Gratitude
Belonging In Glory.
But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and forever! Amen. (2 Peter 3:18)