How to Know You’re Growing

Family pic 2014

Christmas 2014

This summer, my kids are seeing friends and family they haven’t seen in a year. The first response – especially for the younger two – is “Wow! You have grown so much!!”

Fam 2016

Christmas 2015

And they have…well, the younger two. Dave, Emma, and I pretty much look the same. Emma hasn’t grown since 8th grade. (Neither have Dave or I, for that matter. Not in height, anyway!)

All this listening to folks in shock over how much my kids have grown physically made me think about spiritual growth.

It’s easy to measure physical growth: measuring tape and scales can tell us exactly how much we’ve grown. But how can we tell if we’ve grown spiritually?

We can tell in much the same way my kids discovered how much they grew — by asking others and comparing ourselves today to ourselves a year (or two or three years) ago.

You should have people in your life who know you well enough to tell you, honestly, where you are: parents, siblings, best friends, adults you trust. Ask them. And ask yourself: What was I struggling with last year? Anger? Consistent devotion times? Pride? Insecurity? Where are you now in those areas?

Don’t expect perfection – that won’t happen here on earth! But you can expect growth.

When I was growing up, I used to sing in church a lot. I used to come down from singing and all I could think about was whether or not people would complement me after the service. If they did, I was happy. If they didn’t, I was bummed. God did some major work in my life my first year of college – specifically in the area of pride. Sometime after that year, I remember singing in church and walking down off the stage and NOT thinking about whether or not people would complement me after the service. I really just wanted the words of the song to bless others.

I was so excited! Not that I was pride-free. But, through the power of God at work in my life, that particular sin area had been overcome.

There are lots more areas where I have seen God “grow” me. All are exciting to see, but none happened overnight. And there are lots of areas where God is still working. And some areas He hasn’t even revealed to me, yet, because He is far too gracious to show us ALL our sin at one time!

Maybe you’re still growing physically, like Ellie and Thomas. Or maybe, like Dave, Emma and me, you’re done with that. But you should always be growing spiritually. If you’ve been “stuck” for a while, ask God what you need to do to grow.

“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” James 1:5

1 Comment

  1. Sofia Marie
    Jun 12, 2016

    Thank you so much for your reminder! God can definitely help us grow!!!

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