When I Grow Up!

Ephesians 4:13

until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

A phrase I often use – goes like this – when I grow up. For instance – when a friend hits a nice drive or approach shot in golf – I might say – when I grow up – I hope I can hit shots like that. When someone hits a shot in basketball – like my friend Gary often does – an amazing one that is very hard – I might pull out my phrase – when I grow up – I want to be able to do that. I have a hard time growing facial hair – TMI right. When my brother or nephew grow a beard – I pull out my phrase – when I grow up – maybe I’ll be able to grow facial hair too.

Do you have dreams or thoughts about when you grow up? What is that old jingle – I’m a Toys r Us kid and I don’t want to grow up – or something like that. I hope I never fully grow up (in some ways). I always want there to be something more to accomplish and to move toward (even to hope for in the future).

What are your dreams or plans for when you grow up? Some of our younger friends are dreaming about their careers – their marriages – their children – their homes – etc. Some of us might be dreaming about retirement and enjoying our senior years (when we grow up). Maybe we’re hoping to make ends meet – when we grow up. What are your dreams or plans for when you grow up?


Read therest of Ray’s blog: https://raymcdonald.wordpress.com/2021/06/10/when-i-grow-up/

Colossians 2:8 Does Not Condemn Philosophy

Some well-meaning but very misinformed Christians discourage the study of philosophy on the basis of a verse in Colossians chapter 2. In Colossians 2:8, the apostle Paul wrote: “See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits[a] of the world, and not according to Christ.” This verse has become the chief proof-text for anti-philosophy Christians. In fact, even the famous reformed preacher John MacArthur argued against philosophy using this text. In The MacArthur Study Bible, he wrote “You know what philosophers are? They’re doodlers with words instead of pencils. They just make a whole lot of verbal squiggles. Colossians 2:8 says this: ‘Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy.’” Unfortunately, this verse has been majorly misinterpreted.

Read more: https://crossexamined.org/colossians-28-does-not-condemn-philosophy

Do You Possess the 8 Insights of a Spiritually Mature Person?

8 Insights of a Spiritually Mature Person

Have you moved on to the second half of life? Are you doing it with spiritual awareness? Here are 8 insights I culled from Falling Upward that may serve as a gauge as to where you are on your spiritual journey. The words below are mostly Rohr’s, with his exact language in quotes. I have paraphrased some of his other thoughts.

    1. You become less preoccupied with collecting more material goods. “Your efforts are now to cleanse your life of whatever is unnecessary and pay back, give back to the world a bit of what you have received. Your concern is not to have what you love—but to love what you have. Hoarding, collecting, and impressing others with your things, your house, your travels, are of less and less importance.”
    2. You start becoming fully and consciously who you already are. You begin living with what Rohr calls “beginner’s mind” looking at the world around you with less judgement and greater openness. It’s more “about unlearning than learning.”
    3. You return to simplicity after learning from all the complexity. “Simple meaning now suffices and that becomes in itself a much deeper happiness. As the body cannot live without food, so the soul cannot live without meaning.” You find this meaning in “pure friendship, useless beauty, or moments of communion with nature or anything.”

Read the whole blog: https://www.patheos.com/blogs/wakeupcall/2021/04/do-you-possess-the-8-insights-of-a-spiritually-mature-person/

It’s Time to Grow Up!


We have much to say about this, but it is hard to make it clear to you because you no longer try to understand. In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.

Hebrews 5:11-14

Well now, isn’t this an interesting thing to say?  Let’s bear in mind that our author has been talking about Jesus as our great high priest, according to the order of Melchizedek, but he hasn’t discussed Melchizedek yet, he’s only made a reference to him. He has teased us with a contrast between the Old and New Covenant priesthood, and by extension the very nature of the two covenants, and then he diverts his discussion here and gets into the issue of maturity. I really hope that we can avoid the temptation to think that his readers must be very much the immature ones; that we are somehow in a better position spiritually than they were.  If the truth were really to be told, we are not much different today; in fact, we might just be worse off than they were.

I hope, dear reader that anyone who has the courage to keep reading, will take this as an opportunity for some serious reflection and self-examination, as I am doing as I write this; it is a serious matter.

Continue: https://lifereference.wordpress.com/2021/03/30/its-time-to-grow-up-3/

The Importance of Maturity

Hebrews 5:11-14  11 There is much we could say about this, but it is hard to make you understand. It is because you do not want to hear well. 12 By now you should be teachers. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the first things you need to know from God’s Word. You still need milk instead of solid food. 13 Anyone who lives on milk cannot understand the teaching about being right with God. He is a baby. 14 Solid food is for full-grown men. They have learned to use their minds to tell the difference between good and bad.

In today’s passage, we are reminded that our growth as Christians is a long-term process. We do not instantly understand all spiritual things at the moment of salvation. Instead, we develop wisdom over time through Bible study, prayer, and obedience to God’s principles and commands. With diligence, we increasingly learn how to distinguish between truth and error, good and evil, and divine will and personal impressions.

One of the biggest dangers for believers is a failure to mature. To grow, we must have nourishment from God’s Word, and to become strong, we need the exercise of obedience. Otherwise, we would easily be deceived, tossed about, and distracted by every new teaching that comes our way (13 All of us are to be as one in the faith and in knowing the Son of God. We are to be full-grown Christians standing as high and complete as Christ is Himself. 14 Then we will not be as children any longer. Children are like boats thrown up and down on big waves. They are blown with the wind. False teaching is like the wind. False teachers try everything possible to make people believe a lie, Eph. 4:13-14). What’s more, we wouldn’t become familiar with deeper spiritual truths. Our grasp of God’s greatness would be minuscule and our appreciation of Christ’s sacrifice, shallow. And the Bible would remain a confusing and unappealing book to us.

Growing shouldn’t be considered optional in a believer’s life. Too often we think spiritual immaturity is normal, but God doesn’t. He has greater hopes and plans for our relationship with Him.  

Christian Maturity: Arrived, or Just Way Too Far Behind?

Have you ever thought, “I’m just not where I am want to be, or feel I am supposed to be as a Christian”? The most dominant feelings in your life may be of guilt, a feeling of dissatisfaction with yourself, of feeling stuck.

Or perhaps quite the opposite you think “I have arrived.” You have a dominant feeling of satisfaction, of being satisfied with yourself as a person, and as a Christ follower.

Whether we are feeling satisfied or dissatisfied with ourselves, something Paul wrote to the Christians in Philippi will help us:

Not that I have already obtained this or have already reached the goal; but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own.


Paul is well aware that despite his extensive experience of walking with Jesus, he has not arrived. This speaks to us when we think we have arrived.

There are two different ways that we may think we have arrived.

Read more: https://clarkedixon.wordpress.com/2020/11/18/christian-maturity-arrived-or-just-way-too-far-behind/

10 Strategies the Enemy Uses Against Us


12 Marks Of A Spiritually Mature Believer


The One Sure Mark of Christian Maturity

~ Challies

I suppose we all know that as Christians we are meant to grow up, to mature. We begin as infants in the faith and need to develop into adults. The New Testament writers insist that we must all make this transition from milk to meat, from the children’s table to the grown-up’s feast. And yet even though we are aware that we must go through this maturing process, many of us are prone to measure maturity in the wrong ways. We are easily fooled. This is especially true, I think, in a tradition like the Reformed one which (rightly) places a heavy emphasis on learning and on the facts of the faith.

When Paul writes to Timothy, he talks to him about the nature and purpose of the Bible and says, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17). That word complete is related to maturity. Paul says that Timothy, and by extension me and you and all of us, is incomplete, unfinished, and immature. The Bible is the means God uses to complete us, to finish us, to bring us to maturity.

There is more at: https://www.challies.com/christian-living/the-one-sure-mark-of-christian-maturity/

Colossal Truths from the Letter to the Colossians! Spiritual Maturation! (1:28-29)

Of the many, many blessings in my life is my friend Frank. We’ve been friends for decades and even though he lives in the pagan land of New Jersey, he seeks to be a shining light in a dark place. [I live in the pagan land of South Carolina, but at least we talk slower, say nice things to strangers, and drink sweet tea]. Frank and I have been doing a kind of online Bible study with each other — and we’ve recently been going through the incredible letter to the Colossians.

There are a number of prominent themes in this four-chapter epistle. The next theme we want to notice is Paul’s commitment to spiritual maturation. We read in Chapter one:

28 He is the one we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ. 29 To this end I strenuously contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me. (Ch. 1)

Notice Paul’s goal in life: to present everyone fully mature in Christ! Please notice the key to spiritual maturation: the Person of the Lord Jesus! “He is the one we proclaim.” Notice Paul’s commitment to encouraging spiritual maturation in everyone: “To this end I strenuously contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me.” We are not to sit idly by and watch each other stagnate in spiritual infancy!

What efforts, my friend, are you taking to admonish and teach others to grow in God’s grace? Are you striving to present everyone over whom you have some influence fully mature in Christ? Do you see such a mission as a battle — a strenuous contention to allow Christ’s power to work through you?

A challenge: what younger believer comes to your mind who could greatly benefit from a kind of informal mentoring relationship with you?

Comment at: https://larrydixon.wordpress.com/2019/05/25/colossal-truths-from-the-letter-to-the-colossians-spiritual-maturation/