If I had to pick only one word to describe my goal for parenting kids it would be this:
Have any of you parents shuffled through the back-to-school pictures you’ve been taking year by year by year of your kids? You laugh at the goofy haircuts or toothless smiles. And you notice something else. How they’ve grown.
That’s really why you take those pictures, so that in three or thirteen years you can compare that picture to the present day and say, “Look at how you’ve grown up!”
If there is one word to describe God’s goal for his children it would be the same:
“Grow up in your salvation” (1 Peter 2:2).
Yes, God wants you to become his child by faith, to be saved from your sins and promised an eternal life in heaven. But his gracious will for you doesn’t stop there and neither should your spiritual life.
Learning to drive
If you have older kids, remember teaching them to drive? What a hair-raising experience! Especially when you ventured out from the parking lot onto real streets and highways. At some point every parent experiences that dramatic moment when you yell, “Stop!” and your child slams the brake pedal and almost sends you through the windshield.
It was terrifying. And you were proud of them at the same moment. But wouldn’t you be disappointed if their driving ability was still the same ten years later?
The better version of you
God is proud of you who trust in him as your heavenly Father. He is utterly delighted at your efforts to worship and pray and witness. What excites him just as much is the better version of you that he has called you to be.
He knows it. He sees it. He yearns for it. He nudges you there like a mother bird nudging her little one from the nest. He wants you to grow.
Jesus himself grew both physically and spiritually (Luke 2:52; Hebrews 5:8,9). It is a holy thing!
Remembering this one thing will help you face difficulties, pray more fervently, dig deeper into God’s Word, and witness with more passion. Through it all, God wants you to grow.
PRAYER: God, I remember when I was young and it was more natural to grow and learn. Years later, I’m tempted to settle in and create a comfortable life. Remind me that you call me toward your better version of me. Toward growth and life-change. Delight in me, Lord, as I mature in faith and godliness. Amen.
- How have you grown spiritually in the last 6 months?
- What spiritual disciplines do you practice to foster your growth as a disciple?