For those of you with a teenager in your life, you’ve seen what their growth spurts can look like. Your nephew is a little runt one Christmas, and the next he is towering over the whole family. The pandemic quarantine must’ve provided my teenage son the nutrients and sleep he desperately needed because I believe he grew about fifteen feet during this unprecedented time at home. But, he’s a fifteen-year-old boy, so growing is what he is expected to do. If he wasn’t growing, we’d need to visit the doctor to figure out what was wrong with his body.
The same is true for Christians. Growing is expected from anyone following Jesus Christ. The apostle Peter says it like this: “Therefore laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking, as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby, if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious.” (1 Peter 2:1-3)
Peter specifies two means of growth here. One, put away all the detrimental fleshy sins that keep you from growing. If we’re sabotaging our own growth by nurturing pet sins or not acknowledging our sin, we will be stagnant…no, we will wither and be cast away (see John 15 among other verses).
And, the second means of growth is to desire–crave–God’s word. Just as a baby grows from her mama’s milk, we grow from our Father’s pure milk, His word. This is the result of tasting and believing that the Lord is good.
How are you growing as a Christ-follower? What is the evidence that you’re healthy? Or perhaps that you’re not?
While the Holy Spirit abides in each child of God, enabling us to do all that is needed for godly living, we play a part in this sanctifying growth process. Are we willing to put away the bad and seek instead the good? We must have proper desires or cravings to follow through with this for the long haul because all the best intentions will fall flat if our hearts aren’t in it.
Just as my son’s growth is clear for all to see, so will our spiritual growth (or lack thereof) be. Join me in seeking the Lord’s work in our lives–let’s ask Him to give us a craving for the milk of the word so that we may grow!