One of the turning points in my relationship with God was when I did the Experiencing God workbook. Going through that study really increased my understanding about what a relationship with God is like. It showed me that I was pursuing the wrong goal and going it about it the wrong way when it came to a relationship with God.
One of the key points Henry Blackaby makes is the need for us to adjust our lives to God’s will. It is not enough to know correct doctrine or simply go to Church each Sunday. What is required is for us to obey God and follow Jesus wherever He leads us.
The road to Spiritual Maturity is not hard to find, but it is difficult to follow. The adjustments God expects us to make are not always easy, and many times will not make sense to us. The way we would do things is rarely the way God does them.
Someone came to Jesus with this question: “Teacher what good things must I do to have eternal life?”
“Why ask me about what is good?” Jesus replied. “Only God is good. But to answer your question, you can receive eternal life if you keep the commandments.”
“Which ones?” the man asked.
And Jesus replied: “Do not murder. Do not commit adultery. Do not steal. Do not testify falsely. Honor your father and mother. Love your neighbor as yourself.”
“I’ve obeyed all these commandments,” the young man replied. “What else must I do?”
Jesus told him, “If you want to be perfect, go and sell all you have and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” But when the young man heard this, he went sadly away because he had many possessions. (Matthew 19:16-22; NLT)
The Rich Young Man I believe is a person we, as American Christians, can relate to. He is rich and most of us would be consider rich compared with people around the world. The Young Man, like us, has a problem with materialism. What he had had provided him with a certain amount of comfort and security that he had come to depend. Too many of us are in the same boat as the young man, we are religious moral people, but we have more trust in our possessions than we do in God.
The reason the Rich Young Man could not mature past the point of where his religion had taken him is because he was unwilling to make adjustments and follow Jesus. This is key for us as we seek to grow spiritually. The key to spiritual growth are not small groups, Bible Studies, or books. The key is to follow Jesus when He calls, even at the expense of the good things in our lives.
We need to be involved in a small group of Christian, to study the Bible, and to read the thoughts of other Christians because it is often through these things that God reveals His will for our lives. Once God has revealed His will then we are faced with a choice: to ignore God’s voice or to follow Him regardless of the cost. Spiritual Maturity is found on the other side of obedience.
Spiritual Maturity is not a product of methods and programs, but it is a product of faith being lived out. When we decide to follow Jesus, accepting the call He has placed on our lives, is when we begin to head down the path of Spiritual Maturity. Obedience is the key to becoming Spiritually Mature.