There’s a universal truth in this world God has created: Healthy things grow.
Every green tree buds in the spring. Every fresh flower opens it’s petals. Every little bird learns to spread its wings and fly. Healthy things grow. We see it in all of nature around us. It’s by God’s design and by Gods desire…and it begs the question, “Are you growing?”
Paul once prayed this for the believers in Ephesus, “I pray for you constantly, asking God, the glorious Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, to give you spiritual wisdom and insight so that you might grow in your knowledge of God.” Ephesians 1.16-17
Why did Paul pray this way for these people? Because healthy things grow. The question for us is, “How does our faith grow?”
Here’s 5 ways I think you can experience a growing faith in Jesus Christ:
No matter how hard I try, I can’t command a plant to grow. I can’t make my kids taller by telling them to grow. Every living thing requires one common thing for growth: TIME. And it takes time over time to grow your faith. We can’t make our faith grow, but we can put ourselves in position to grow in knowing God. And when you do that time after time, you can’t help but experience a growing faith.
I think it’s important to note that before a plant grows up, it grows down. My wife and I recently went to buy flowers for our front yard and we also bought dirt! Why? Because we know that for these plants to grow well they need rich soil for their roots to grow down. The same is true of us. Where are you rooted? Paul’s prayer for his friends was that their “roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong.” (Ephesians 3.17)
3. AIR: Breathe the breath of God
We believe that scripture is “God-breathed.” (2 Timothy 3.16-17) So if the word of God is God’s breath on a page, then we need to breathe deep the breath of God. We need to breathe deep the Gospel of God. Paul said it this way,
“But God is so rich in mercy, and he LOVED us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he GAVE us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been SAVED!)” (Ephesians 2.4-5)
God LOVED. God GAVE. God SAVED. This is the gospel. It’s the reminder that sin doesn’t make you bad & Jesus didn’t come to make you better. Sin made you dead and Jesus came to raise you back to life!
4. LIGHT: Live in the Light
There’s a reason they don’t sell plants packaged in boxes. Plants need light to live. In the same way, you and I need the Light of Christ to experience real life. It’s when we remain in the darkness that we struggle to live. The good news is that at the center of God’s heart is His desire to move us into a position to grow, and that position is toward LIGHT. You can’t grow in Christ if you’re stuck in sin. Again, Paul says, “For once you were full of darkness, but now you have light from the Lord. So live as people of light! For this light within you produces only what is good and right and true.” (Ephesians 5.8-9)
We GROW in Christ when we TURN toward the LIGHT.
5. EACH OTHER: Transformation Means Confrontation
This is the point at which we differ from plants, at least most plants I know of. Because I can take a seed, plant it in rich soil, water it, put it in the light and give it plenty of time to grow and most of the time, it will grow. It can grow and become something beautiful all by itself, but you simply cannot.
You were never created to GROW alone. You were created to GROW TOGETHER.
Paul encourages the church this way, “Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church.” (Ephesians 4.15)
When we speak the truth in love to each other — we GROW in Christ. Now this is critical, so I don’t want you to miss it. If we don’t speak the truth to each other in love, then we WON’T GROW. The absence of speaking truth = the absence of growth. Christ wants YOU to GROW because He wants US to GROW.
My prayer is that you will experience a growing relationship with Jesus Christ.
“Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen.” (Ephesians 3.20-21)
Corey Trevathan serves as the Preaching Minister at Riverside Church of Christ in Coppell,
TX. Visit his blog at coreytrevathan.com.