And so we shall all come together to that oneness in our faith and in our knowledge of the Son of God; we shall become mature people, reaching to the very height of Christ’s full stature.
Ephesians 4:13 GNB
And now, my brothers and sisters, goodbye! Strive for perfection; listen to my appeals; agree with one another; live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.
2 Corinthians 13:11 GNB
Perfection seems so unattainable and yet there is undeniably a sense of dissatisfaction with the current state of myself and the church, God’s people. I find that deeply frustrating yet the Lord keeps reminding me, in many ways, that our lives are not a race where we are trying to get to the end as quickly as possible and our lives are not about ticking off achievements. Maturing is not about “doing” something but “becoming” someone. God is in for the long haul and he will take as long as he needs to bring us to maturity. This process may seem to take too long. Mark Buchanan (author of God Walk: Moving at the Speed of Your Soul) says this:
Think about the slowness, the labouring groaning back-and-forth slowness, of it, the many plodding years, the many lapses and mishaps and detours. It’s taken all this time for you to become even halfway kind or generous or truthful or loving or just. And how many times have you gotten stuck—in resentment, in fear, in scarcity thinking, in apathy?
But Mark goes on to point out that God made humans to grow slowly, in comparison with the rest of the animal kingdom we take a long time to mature. That’s the way God made us. So we can be sure that God is not perturbed by the fact that we take a long time to mature and grow in Christ; I am sure God enjoys the process far more than we do. The expectation to grow is definitely scriptural though so I encourage each of us to continue opening up our hearts to the Lord so that he can cause us to grow. I encourage each of us to keep building each other up so that we do not become discouraged. And let each of us keep focussed on what God is doing rather than on our “light and momentary troubles”. We can be sure that, as the hymn says, ‘God is working his purposes out’.
Prayer: Father, though I often get impatient, I recognise your sovereignty and trust you to fulfill your purposes in me. Jesus, thank you for interceding for me. Holy Spirit please fill me. Amen