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Several years ago I heard someone describe the Christian experience as similar to that of a piano player, and suddenly the commands of the Bible made more sense and seemed less daunting. When a person begins playing piano, do we expect them to play a piece by Mozart without a mistake? No. We don’t expect them to play on that level at all. We can, however, envision them playing “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” flawlessly. The more they commit themselves to the study and practice of piano, the greater their ability, and they are able to play more complex pieces with increasing excellence.

The spiritual life is similar. We advance from stage to stage in progression. As we go forward with God we see greater degrees of holiness, righteousness, and perfection in our lives. As long as we live, there is further progression to make. There’s always another level. There’s always a better place ahead, where we can see and hear God more clearly, accomplish His will more completely, and enjoy His presence more intimately.

(From a sermon by Joel Smith, "Going Forward with God" 1/24/2009)

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