I don’t think there’s a single Christian on the planet who hasn’t been frustrated at some point with the lack of spiritual growth happening in their life. It’s my assumption that most Christians reading this post would actually agree that they are currently facing this frustration. Especially over the summer, even though you might see some people who appear to be doing really well, many are discouraged as days and weeks go by with very little happening spiritually in their life (besides failure).
There’s a very simple truth communicated throughout Scripture that provides an explanation for many of these situations. It’s an answer to the question “Why am I not growing?”
2 Corinthians 3:18 – “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory by the Spirit of the Lord.”
How is it we grow and are transformed into the image of Christ? By beholding His glory. This really shouldn’t be too much of a surprise, yet somehow we are continually mystified when we don’t see growth. Nourishment is needed to grow, and for many Christian’s their growth is stunted because they are starving themselves of their Savior’s glory.
Every one of us is hardwired to look for glory. We’re always on the look out for it, something to appreciate, to value, to follow. There is glory in whatever you admire. And for many, the glory they consume throughout the day is not God’s, but their own. What does it say when you give 10 minutes to focus on God but the rest of the day is spent saturating in the world’s factory of cheap glory (i.e. television, video games, social media, etc.)? All of those are fine mediums of entertainment but dangerous things to be engulfed in and enthralled by. What those things achieves in large quantity is the exact opposite of what Paul is pleading for in Romans 12:2. The only way we can avoid conformity to the world is through renewing our mind with the transforming glory of God. Do we really expect to grow in Christ-likeness while being gripped by everything but Him throughout the day?
It really is simple. What mesmerizes you is what’s molding you. What you are beholding is what you are becoming. If you want to look like Christ, you need to be looking at Christ. You can’t grow in Christ-likeness if you don’t know what Christ is like. Colossians 3:10 says that we are to put on the new man by being renewed in the knowledge of the image of our Creator. In other words, the image we are “putting on” is what God has already revealed in Himself, and the way we put it on is by growing in our knowledge of Him. This means that it is the increasing knowledge of Christ’s life that intensifies grace in the believer’s life to become like Him.
So when you read your Bible, look for God. Don’t just sample pieces of God here and there, but actually taste and see that He is good by continually feasting and filling your soul with the glory of who He is and what He’s done. This is when you’ll gain the strength to grow, and this is when you’ll realize the Christian life is so much more than a list of rules. Our calling is to revel in and reflect the glory that God has revealed to us. We can be like Moses who, after spending time with God on the mount, returned to the people glowing in the glory of his God.
It’s up to you, though, to choose what you’ll feed your soul and how you’ll spend your time. I’m simply encouraging you to live your life consumed with the glory of your Creator.