0708_initiativesOur fourth and final initiative for the ’07-’08  ministry year (October-September) is to clearly define spiritual maturity for the people of Community Christian Church.

This story will help illustrate what we want to get across with this initiative.  Imagine
that you meet a 50 year old man and then you discover that this 50 year old man
still lives at home with his mom and dad. What is your reaction? Your not
gonna say are you? Ok, while I may not
say anything out loud; the truth is I’m thinking, “Why is this guy still at
home?” And then you find out that this
50 year old man who still lives with his mom and dad doesn’t have a job and
that he spends most of his day sitting on the couch watching the cartoon
network. Now what are you thinking? Ok, you are with me – you are thinking, “Why
isn’t this guy providing for himself and why is he still mooching off his
parents?”

And let’s say you observe this guy
at dinner at his parents and when it comes time to eat you watch his 75 year
old mother reach over and spoon feed her 50 year old son. At this point you know there is something
very wrong. Something is very wrong in
his maturing, his development. I mean,
if he was five months old, this would be appropriate. But even at five years…he should be feeding
himself. And at 50 he should not only be
feeding himself, but providing for himself and really providing for
others! Right!?!

In the same way, spiritual maturity
is not all about you getting fed. Just
like with a baby you don’t want to be feeding him/her when she is an
adult. By then, you want them feeding
themselves and once they have kids, they begin to feed others, right? And I know sometimes churches have created a
spiritual dependency relationship and teach people that the be-all and end-all
in spiritual maturity is getting fed by coming to hear the Pastor teach. This feels great for the pastor’s ego, but
that leaves everyone as a spiritual infant crying, “feed me”. We need to grow to the place where we know how
to feed ourselves and then feed others.

We started the process this weekend as we began the Arrested Development series.  In a simple Big Idea we are explaining spiritual maturation like this:

  • Spiritual Infancy = Getting Fed
  • Spiritual Adolescence = Feeding Yourself
  • Spiritual Maturity = Feeding Others

There is a lot more we will say on this topic; like spiritual maturation is not about the length of time you have been a Christ Follower, it is about the speed in which you obey.  It is possible for someone to show signs of both infancy and maturity at the same time.  Like I said, there is more to come…but that gives you an idea of where we are headed.

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