The Lord is dealing with me ever so patiently… but I cry like an infant child as He’s trying to develop and mature me again. Stretching doesn’t feel good when the muscles haven’t been used to it for a while.
I feel like I’m going back to square one because of my recent rebellion. His rebuke and discipline are SOOOO good, but soooo painful. He is a good Father.
These verse can pretty much describe how I was acting over the past year and mostly throughout this past summer:
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
I was no longer trying to understand the spiritual things… I’d plugged my ears and closed my eyes and didn’t want the solid food the Lord was wanting to feed me. I wanted to remain an infant, this other stuff was ‘too hard’, ‘too uncomfortable’, ‘too extreme’, ‘too deeply spiritual’ for me… so I ran from it because I thought I wanted a “normal” life. But then I felt what normal felt like, tasted it… if I had to eat solid food, I wanted the “normal” kind… yet like most things man-created, it was processed junk… a bunch of empty calories. Sure it tasted good at the time, but then the consequences of eating processed empty junk created more of a problem. I reaped what I sowed when I ate it…
So back to the beginning I went… from deep empty despair to repentance, God’s amazing rebuke and mercy prevailed in my heart and life. He still had me all along. But I was an infant again, crawling back to Him. I’m thankful for this childlike dependency on Him, but I’m ready for Him to start feeding me solid food. He’s rebuilding the trust though, I think… I’ve got to be faithful again in the small things before He gives me the other things I know are on His heart (I know they’re there because those were the things I was running from). I’m not going to begin to presume what God is going to do, but it feels like His next phase is to add some rice to the milk formula… when He’s ready and knows I’m ready, that is.
Therefore let us move beyond the elementary teachings about Christ and be taken forward to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death, and of faith in God, instruction about cleansing rites, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. And God permitting, we will do so. – Hebrews 6:1-3
Maturing doesn’t always feel good. Maturing means taking on more responsibilities and you can’t be lazy anymore. Maturing means you have to be faithful in the small things. Maturing means less room for excuse and you can no longer be a victim. Maturing means a lot of stretching and muscle building. Maturing is a slow process of development and doesn’t happen over night.
I was the kid that never wanted to grow up… that was me mentally and emotionally… I would seriously cry on my birthdays most years after I became a teenager. I didn’t like the thoughts of growing up. Adults seemed so miserable, bitter, frustrated, stressed… like they had to pretend all the time that they had everything all figured out. Growing up was a trap and I seemed to have been one of the few to realize this, I never understood the peers who wanted to get older quicker, I was fighting as long as I could to stay in innocence and freedom. I preferred the care-free pretend and the simplicity and joy of childhood.
But I didn’t realize that I was also a kid who spiritually never wanted to grow up either. That is, until I ran straight into my own trap and God got a hold of me again showing me just how much I’ve been running away from Him and what He wanted to mature in me. I had a false view of maturity… seeing it as a burden, trap, miserable existence of stress, frustration, and bitterness. I couldn’t see joy, freedom, and innocence in that maturity so I ran and rebelled… I didn’t want maturity, I didn’t want to understand. As a child, I already knew what burdens feel like, so if they got 10, 100, or 1000 times harder as I matured, how would I survive?!
God’s grace, Christ’s life, His freedom, His blood… enables us to carry a yoke that is light. Maturity isn’t a trap, it’s a beautiful, joyful, freeing, innocent existence as we walk hand-in-hand with our Father and the Lover of our souls. Because we walk closely to His side in maturity, there is still a childlike dependency, awe, and faith in Him.
I honestly don’t know if any of that makes sense or connects whatsoever… it just came out how it did. I’m just thankful to know that I can come to my Father in childlike expectancy, as a crying infant needing milk, and He can then decide how He wants to develop and mold me.
It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age and who have fallen away, to be brought back to repentance. To their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace. Land that drinks in the rain often falling on it and that produces a crop useful to those for whom it is farmed receives the blessing of God. But land that produces thorns and thistles is worthless and is in danger of being cursed. In the end it will be burned. – Hebrews 6:4-8