Defining Spiritual Maturity
How is it that some people can be born again, faithful church members for many decades and act so immaturely under pressure or in conflict while others who have been believers such a short time seem to reflect Christ so well? It’s because spiritual maturity isn’t defined chronologically. It doesn’t matter so much how long you’ve been a Christian. It matters whether you’ve been growing while a Christian.
I love the way Tony Evans states it in his book Time To Get Serious…
So what is maturity? Very simply, it is coming to the place where you think, judge, and react biblically to every situation. When it is the rule and not the exception for you to apply the Bible to your life; when you place every area of your life under the Lordship of Jesus Christ; when you can say in everything, “Here I am, Lord. What do You want me to do?” – then you are a mature disciple of Jesus Christ.”
Spiritual maturity takes time, but not dead time. Maturity requires time in which we are actively engaging our heart, soul, and mind by the challenges of the Word of God and then enduring real life situations in which we successfully apply the principles of God’s Word.
Spiritual maturity certainly is the goal for the believer – total Christlikeness – but remember that it’s not about age or tenure, it’s about our level of Christlikeness.
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