So that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God. — Colossians 1:10 NIV
When we first become believers, we are new to our faith. However, as time passes, we can see spiritual growth and maturity taking root in our lives. We will never achieve perfection here on earth and that should not be our goal. Rather, God is making us new, and we can allow him to work in our lives and in our hearts.
In This Weekly Devotional:
- Draw Near to God
- Healthy Habits for Mature Christians
- Not By Our Works
- Developing the Fruit of the Spirit in Our Lives
Draw Near to God
Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. — Hebrews 10:22 NIV
In order to grow spiritually and mature in our faith, we must draw near to God. We cannot mature on our own. Without him, our works and efforts are worthless. However, he makes us clean gives us the strength and ability to grow and put aside sin. We need to spend time in his presence and allow him to move in our lives.
Healthy Habits for Mature Christians
Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. — 2 Timothy 2:22 NIV
There are some habits that we can develop to grow in Godliness:
- Spend time and meditate on God’s word: The bible is God’s word and spending time in it can help us grow in Godliness. It gives us truth and insight into living a life for Christ. Without the Bible, developing spiritual maturity is just a wishful idea and not a reality.
- Pray and thank God: As Christians, we have the ability to communicate with God. Spending time in prayer will help us grow closer to him and help us prioritize him and his desires. We can bring him our thanks and joys and our sorrows and requests. He listens to his children.
- Fellowship with other believers: Spending time with others who are also trying to grow closer to God and develop spiritual maturity can be an encouragement to us in our Christian walks. Through fellowship opportunities like church, bible study or even having a meal together, we can make connections that promote maturity in Christ.
- Worship and praise him: Worship is about bringing glory and honor to God. Forming a habit or worship and praise will help us turn to God’s goodness even in the midst of trials. Despite our situations, we can lift our voices to him and praise him for what he has done.
- Put aside sin: In order to grow in Godliness, we must repent and put aside sin. We will never be perfect and without sin. However, we should strive to live as we are made new.
- Pursue what is good: Philippians 4:8 tells us to dwell on “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy.” As Christians, we should not pursue what the world pursues but rather what God loves.
Not By Our Works
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one can boast. — Ephesians 2:8-9 NIV
For some of us, we can get caught up in the lie that we have to work a little harder or grow a little faster to earn God’s love and salvation. This is far from true. Our work has nothing to do with our salvation. Isaiah 64:6 compares righteous acts to filthy rags. If we try to measure up by our own works, we never will.
However, God knew this and made a plan. The only thing that saves us is Jesus Christ. It is by grace we have been saved, not our own spiritual maturity or works.
Developing the Fruit of the Spirit in Our Lives
By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. — Matthew 7:16-18 NIV
We are not saved by our works, however as Christians our lives should reflect the fact that we are made new. Our lives should start to exhibit the fruits of the spirit. In the New International Version, Galatians 5:22-23 lists the fruit of the spirit as love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
For some Christians, change is made immediately and there is a complete lifestyle change when they become a believer. For others, the change in their hearts may be subtle at first but as time passes the fruits of the spirit are seen on display in their lives.
Let us all examine our hearts and our actions and look at the fruits we are producing. Are they honoring to God? Or are they reminiscent of our old sinful nature?
Spiritual maturity and growing in Godliness is a process, however we can find joy in the growth we have experienced in our faith to become spiritually mature Christians.
Are you interested in growing in your faith at a Christian university? Explore Grand Canyon University’s degree options and learn why GCU may be the choice for you. Fill out the form on this page for more information.
Approved by the local outreach coordinator of the Office of Spiritual Life on June 19, 2023.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.