So last week we looked at how the word “grace” is used in relation to God giving us blessings we do not deserve. The Greek word for grace which we looked at is “cháris”. In the Strong’s definitions of the word “cháris”, G5485, grace is also defined as being “the merciful kindness by which God, exerting his holy influence upon souls, turns them to Christ, keeps, strengthens, increases them in Christian faith, knowledge, affection, and kindles them to the exercise of the Christian virtues”. This week I want us to look at the concept of God giving us grace to grow.
By grace, God helps us to increase in our faith, knowledge and affection and helps us to live virtuous lives. I see this kind of grace as God giving us space and time to grow. God gives us space to move around so we can go on this journey of discovering who we are; discovering our true identity in Him, the things He has hidden inside of us, who He created us to be, who he is calling us to be and what we can become. Then He gives us time to grow into it.
2 Corinthians 3:18 says, “We can all draw close to him with the veil removed from our faces. And with no veil we all become like mirrors who brightly reflect the glory of the Lord Jesus. We are being transfigured into his very image as we move from one brighter level of glory to another. And this glorious transfiguration comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.”
God is doing such a great work in us, we only need to yield to the process. When we are babies, God holds the bottle for us so we can have our milk. We so much as think about something, it happens. We don’t spend weeks praying and fasting, it just happens. We so much as open our bibles and revelations stare us in the face, just waiting there for us. Everything just happens.
As we grow, we begin to see the transition. From things just happening, to us having to exercise our faith muscles and then witnessing God’s faithfulness as He answers our prayers. By grace, God works on the inside of us and transforms us into Christ likeness as we mature in Him. Everyone’s growth process is different and unfortunately it cannot be condensed into a three step program. But, we are all on this journey of being transformed into Christ’s image as we move from glory to glory, from grace to grace and from strength to strength.
Growing up and maturing spiritually is for our benefit. We have a real enemy who takes advantage of spiritual babies who cling to the bottle and who won’t submit to the process of growth. Babies are vulnerable and weak but there is grace and protection for that season in the time in which you are meant to be in that season.
When we yield to the growth process and we move when God moves (instead of throwing tantrums or pouting) we will find that the transition between seasons of growth only requires our obedience and submission to God. There is grace for it. However, it is when we resist this growth that we find ourselves struggling in our spiritual walk because we find ourselves occupying a space and time that grace has moved on from.
Grace by nature seeks to give. If we follow God’s grace into the next season of growth, we will realise that God only wanted to give us more. More of Himself, more of His anointing, more of His peace, more of His joy, more of His grace and more faith as we mature in Him. Spiritual maturity is a process and we don’t arrive there overnight. I am even inclined to think that you can be spiritually mature about some things and still be “on the journey” about other things. We are all on a journey, but our verse says that we are being transfigured into his very image as we move from one brighter level of glory to another.
Philippians 1:6 puts it this way, “I pray with great faith for you, because I’m fully convinced that the One who began this glorious work in you will faithfully continue the process of maturing you and will put his finishing touches to it until the unveiling of our Lord Jesus Christ!”
So, if God gives us grace (space and time) to grow we must give ourselves some grace too. Enjoy the space you are in and don’t waste it. There are lessons to be learned in each season. However, when it is time to move to the next space and next level of growth, don’t hesitate or throw a tantrum. Instead, throw your hands in the air and dive right on in. Grace will be there to catch you.
Love and blessings,