Category Archives: Growth

As Iron Sharpens Iron

pr 27 17“You just want to be safe.  But life is scary, and it gets interesting when it’s scary because then it requires trusting in God.”  These words came from a wise woman who is like a mother figure to me.  I love conversations with older, wiser people who have been there, done that, and they have experienced life without God and know how blessed it is to live life with and for God.

As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another – Proverbs 27:17

When it comes to sharpening one another spiritually, I think we need to talk about that more often at church.  We talk about grace, forgiveness and salvation a lot, which is great, but what about after you become a Christian and have made Jesus Lord of your life?  If you’re like me, having come from a disadvantaged situation, it’s likely that you may not have had ideal parental role models who continually coach and guide you even after you have “grown up.”  Teaching should not stop after we “come of age,” but we should continually seek wisdom from older, wiser individuals whom we respect spiritually, personally and professionally.

Teaching is not just reserved for the young, either.  Even older men and women need to be taught, as Paul wrote to Titus:

You, however, must teach what is appropriate to sound doctrine.Teach the older men to be temperate, worthy of respect, self-controlled, and sound in faith, in love and in endurance.

Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.

 Similarly, encourage the young men to be self-controlled. In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us.

 11 For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people.12 It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, 13 while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, 14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.

 15 These, then, are the things you should teach. Encourage and rebuke with all authority. Do not let anyone despise you.

Titus 2:1-15

Scriptures are the ultimate authority, of course, but if there are spiritually mature people in your church who could guide you, why not ask for a mentor?  Everyone has blind spots; we need to grow as people!  Spiritual maturity is biblical:

11 So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, 12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

14 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves,and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. 16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

Ephesians 4:11-16

What is the purpose of maturity?   Is it just so you can be a better person and that’s it?  According to the scriptures, Christ gave leadership to his people, the church, so that these leaders may equip Christians for works of service.  In other words, the role of leadership is to equip you for works of service, so that you may become mature.

Leadership does not have to be a title.  If you can find someone in your church that you respect, that person can be a leader in your life to help equip you, whether that means calling you out on your character so you can repent and grow, or calling you out of your comfort zone.  Maturity is not all about you, anyway.  It’s all about becoming a better worker for the Lord so we can serve and meet one another’s needs in the body of Christ.

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