I grew up playing basketball, and spent many days on my dirt side yard basketball “court” working to develop my skills. As much as I loved the sport, I remember barely making the team in 8th grade and struggling to grow into my size 13 Jordans. My skill level was way behind my height and hands. Needless to say, an uncoordinated 8th grade basketball player will hear the dreaded “He has great potential” phrase often.
Ephesians 4:15 describes a believer who is growing IN CHRIST in every way. The need to grow points to the reality that we may be an uncoordinated believer who has the height and hands, but still is just showing potential. This encouragement follows a warning in verse 14 of how dangerous it could be for an immature Christian who could be tempted to follow false teachers.
Rather than focus on the negative – given we will discuss that more in our weekly sermon – let’s point our attention to the call to be connected to Christ and grow in Him. Christ is our all-sufficient Savior in whom we live, move, and have our identity. It is our focus on that vertical relationship that strengthens our hope and confidence, that then strengthens our horizontal relationships.
The portrait of God’s people walking in Christ, confident in the Gospel and carrying hope and love to the world, is a beautiful picture of unity and maturity. Regardless of your years in relationship with God, we are challenged to step into our potential and walk in rhythm with the Holy Spirit. There is no shame, nor need to feel embarrassed, if you identify the needs to grow.
If we are honest, we all have areas of our life that need to mature. There is beauty when we grow individually and pursue Christ. In that vertical pursuit, we will watch Him grow His church in unity and to work properly on mission with Him.
Be encouraged and walk in confidence today as you exercise the discipline and determination you need to grow in Christ.