DAY 14: CONNECTION – THE KEY TO GROWTH

November 14, 2014 at 8:47 PM Leave a comment

two trees growing together - into an up arrow (landscape)

 

Ever find yourself growing spiritually stale?

Maybe even stagnant?

Let’s face it, we’ve all been there at one time or another. You know, those days when you’re not exactly sure what’s wrong—but it’s clearer than clear that something’s not right.

When I feel like that, it eventually dawns on me: “Hey, I think I’m feeling disconnected…”

Maybe from myself. Or my true desires.

Or more often than I’d like to admit…

Disconnected from God.

Which honestly kinda catches me by surprise, because with all my heart I try to stay connected to Him. Though I often fail, I rarely remember making a conscious choice to move away from Him. Yet slowly but surely, I’ve drifted.

Does that ever happen to you?

My guess is, it happens to all of us.

Yet in a way, it’s not all that surprising. In John 15 Jesus uses a variety of words—remain, abide, obey—to repeatedly remind us to stay connected to Him. I’m guessing He mentions it so many times because He knows what a huge challenge staying connected is—with the world, the flesh, and the devil constantly trying to distract us.

He knows we will have to choose—day by day, hour by hour, and sometimes even minute by minute—to make a conscious choice to renew our connection with Him, or without realizing it we will slowly but surely drift backward and just “go with the flow.”

Yet thankfully that’s not the whole story: God has give us mighty tools to combat “drift.”

For one thing, His blessed Holy Spirit is always there to draw us, strengthen us, and work through us. Like life-giving sap in the branches of a tree, the Spirit of God is constantly filling us with life each day that we choose to walk with Him.

Not only that, but He’s given us each other. Many times we trudge through the Christian life like long-suffering Lone Rangers, as if we were intended to gut it out on our own. Yet we were never meant to live in isolation. We are relational beings by nature, and we grow best when connected to other people. Scriptural commands like “love one another” and “go and make disciples” weren’t given to make our burdens heavier; they’re actually gifts from God to lighten our load and stimulate growth.

“Doing life together” with other believers – whether older, younger, or peers – is one of the best ways ever to stay more connected with God and the practical truths of Scripture. When you see your friends growing, bearing the fruit of the Spirit, and learning to serve others in Jesus’ name—it’s quite contagious. It’s also an excellent reminder that both vertically and horizontally, connection and growth do in fact go together!

John 15:5

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”

Proverbs 27:17

“As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend…”

If you’re feeling disconnected today, why not get together with a friend this next week to talk, listen, and maybe even pray together. You might be surprised at how much lighter your load feels – and how growth inducing it can be!

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Entry filed under: 2014, basics of the faith, Discipleship, Friendship, Growth Spurts, NaBloPoMo, one-to-one discipling, Spiritual Mentoring, Uncategorized. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

DAY 13: CUT FLOWERS DAY 15: LIFE IN THE GAP

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KIM ALDRICH

Writer... speaker..."growing edge" seeker

ABOUT ME

Each new day offers a fresh opportunity to learn or languish, stagnate or grow. Like all sincere Christians, I face the ongoing challenge of finding THE GROWING EDGE.

FOLLOW KIM ON TWITTER!

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WORDS TO GROW BY

TEN WAYS TO LOVE

1. LISTEN without interrupting
(Proverbs 1:8)

2. SPEAK without accusing
(James 1:19)

3. GIVE without sparing
(Proverbs 21:26)

4. PRAY without ceasing
(Colossians 1:9)

5. ANSWER without arguing
(Proverbs 17:1)

6. SHARE without pretending
(Ephesians 4:15)

7. ENJOY without complaint
(Philippians 2:14)

8. TRUST without wavering
(I Corinthians 13:7)

9. FORGIVE without punishing
(Colossians 3:13)

10. PROMISE without forgetting
(Proverbs 13:12)

2014 NaBloPoMo!

NaBloPoMo November 2014

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