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Growing in Spiritual Maturity

I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us who are mature think this way.

Philippians 3:14–15
Growing in Spiritual Maturity Book Cover

Even though we consider Paul to have been spiritually mature, he never gave the impression that he was finished growing. In Philippians 3, today’s Scripture, he wrote that he had not yet reached perfection, signaling that spiritual maturity is not about a moment of arrival. It is, instead, a continuous progression that lasts our whole lives. What we can also appreciate about Paul is his honesty about his struggles and the areas of his life where he still needed growth (Romans 7:21; 2 Corinthians 12:8–9). But Paul never gave up, relying more and more on God’s grace and strength the further along the journey he gets.

It’s a lesson we can learn. The more we grow and mature, the more we realize just how weak we are on our own. As we grow in God, we realize our deep need for him. Pleasing him becomes our passion. Just as we relied on the gospel for our salvation, we continue to rely on Jesus’ saving work throughout our journey of faith. At no time in our walk do we rely on our own merits or efforts. Paul even says that he refuses to trust in the things that could lead to a successful life—his pedigree, his religious affiliation. Before Christ, he boasted in those things. But after accepting Christ, he considers it all rubbish (Philippians 3:8). He rejects all trust in his former identity and embraces a personal relationship with Jesus.

Keep Going

“I press on toward the goal . . .” (Philippians 3:14). Through Paul’s writing, we are encouraged to continue on our journey of faith. It is not the easiest, and there are times when we want to throw in the towel. But he promises that it’s worth it to keep going.

Why is growing in God so important? We want to know Jesus deeply. And the more we get to know him, the more we are determined to let his character shine in every aspect of our lives. Our spiritual growth is not characterized by checklists and rigorous rules. With thankful hearts, we live out our salvation with obedience and service to the one who has rescued us from a terrible life. We desire to serve God out of love and that he would say of us as he said of Jesus, “These are my beloved daughters with whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17).


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Daily Question

How do you feel about your spiritual journey? Does it seem to be filled with more setbacks than progressions? Or do you feel like you’re stuck in place and spinning your wheels? How do you think the presence of other believers can encourage you to keep going?

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Comments (4)

I feel right now my spiritual journey is that I am growing. I have become more aware of my identity in Christ. I find myself sharing the gospel of Christ to my family friends more. I have this hunger for the need of Christ more and more in my life, and that is an awesome place to be. I think this year has been good to the fact that it has given me more time to sit at the feet of Jesus and study his word.

I’ve never just felt stuck in place. It’s always been more of a 3 steps forward 2 steps back kinda thing. I’m making progress but it’s slow progress. The more I learn about God the more I realize it’s not how much knowledge I acquire it’s about what I’m willing to let go. My Christian friends around me are the people who see me struggle and remind me to look up. They remind me where I’ve come from and the things God has accomplished in my life when I do let go and let him lead.

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