Growth – a bit-by-bit process
In today’s “instant” culture, we want change to happen right away. Words like “fast” and “easy” are like honey to our psyche that wants results now! But that’s not how growth and development work! And that’s not how God works when He is helping us become more like Jesus.
Think of seed planted in the ground. We know it takes time for that seed to experience the transformation it must go through before it can be sprout. And then the spout has more changes before it can become a plant and produce leaves. And then the plant must grow and mature before it can produce fruit!
Can you imagine standing over a little 12 inch high apple tree seedling and wondering why it isn’t producing apples? Or standing over a shoot of corn that has just broken through the ground and being upset because there are no ears of corn? That’s silly thinking, right?
Yet, that’s what happens to us when we don’t experience the transformation results we want in our lives. We wonder why God isn’t hearing our prayers. Or we say, “Oh, this stuff just doesn’t work.” Then we set aside the very practices that cause growth to happen . . . and go back to our carnal ways. That’s like yanking the seedlings out of the ground because they aren’t producing “fast enough.”
Growth happens bit-by-bit. It’s a process. And as long as we stay in the “hurry up” frame of mind, our growth will be hindered. Instead, to experience the change and transformation that we want in our Christian faith, we need to stay in the process. We need to nourish the soil (our heart) with the Word of God. We need to stay close to the Source of all life so we can be well watered. And we need to be patient, yet full of assurance, that the growth will happen.
God’s spiritual laws are always true. Similar to how the natural laws of creation are always truth (after all – He created those laws, also). So be patient. Stay in the ground. And surround yourself with what you need to become deeply rooted, full of vitality, and able to grow and produce the fruit that is already inside of you waiting to manifest in God’s time!
“But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” James 1:4
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering (patience), kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23