Scheduled Intimacy: Growing in Christ
I have been holding this back for a long time now, but, I get angry. I mean, I used to get really angry… for no reason. It felt like every day something would set me off. I would fight with my wife. I would yell at my kids. I am not proud of these things, but they are a reality of my life. Thankfully I am surrounded by people with huge hearts and wide gates of forgiveness.
Until now, I haven’t really told a lot of people. It’s out there for everyone now. Thankfully I have had a handful of people who have stepped in to love me, pray for me, and really dig into what was going on. That brings me to today’s look at our second verse from the original Scheduled Intimacy post. Check it out HERE if you haven’t already! Here’s today verse.
2 Peter 3:18 ESV But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.
I have been finding out that in all aspects of my life, family, friends, staff members, co-workers, etc. that there is a growing need for me to learn to be more gracious. I mean, no matter how much I think I have conquered that sphere of my life I am turned around again to see how I am in desperate need of it myself, and a need to give it out to others much more freely! Especially as leaders, in what ever capacity you lead in it is quite consequential to the success of your leadership. Paramount actually.
I am admitting lots of stuff today. About two years ago our ministry really started to pick up. I was and am involved with many things, and was constantly having to find time just to be with my family, let alone do any extra work. For at least a year and a half, maybe almost two years I only read the bible on Sunday’s, at church. Can you believe that? And to be more honest, I was often measuring my status in comparison to where I thought others were around me, because I felt like I was in a more mature place than them. Because of that, I proceeded to tell myself that it was okay, I’m doing fine. Wow, what had I become? Even worse, what was I to become if I continued on this path? Needless to say, this coincided with that period of time that I became exceedingly angry. Hmmm. Just a coincidence, I think not.
In 2 Peter there is not a request, but a command to grow. Specifically, to grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ. What does that do? Growing in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ feeds us healthy reminders of who we are–sinners, and who He is–perfect and holy. When I thought it was okay to compare myself to others I was elevating myself up high. I was disregarding who God was and setting my place up as the measure of where I should be instead of where God had called me to be. That is such a dangerous place. God tells us in this passage that it is a necessity for us to be constantly learning and growing in Christ to provide an adequate reference point for our lives. We are never an adequate reference point for grace or holiness, ever.
Then, the second part of the verse says, “To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.” When you view yourself in light of Christ and the cross, the appropriate response is worship. What we aim to do as leaders, as worshippers, as entertainers, is point people to the cross. To educate them on the saving grace of Jesus Christ on the cross. How can we do that if we are consistently pointing to ourselves?
My friends, when I was angry it was because I was always thinking about me. What about my feelings, what about my ways, what about me mee meee, MEEEE! In that place, I can say that I was showing nothing other than my selfish nature and my true heart. We are called to grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ in order to have our sinfulness washed away by the blood of the Lamb. It’s then, when we’ve been washed, that we can truly be effective for the kingdom of God.
How have your washings been going? Do you have some sins that you need to confess and let Jesus wash away?
Growing in Christ is not just recommended, but required. Pick up your Bible today and be filled with his word, his Spirit, and his grace!
Love you guys, and praying that you too, like me, are growing every day.