Summary: "I want to, I need to, be more like Jesus." Thirty-four dimensions of maturity in Christ. When I became a man, I put away childish things -- including the fear of childishness and the desire to be grown-up.
The Problem of Becoming Mature in Many Aspects
The word teleios is the Greek word used for maturity. It implies a wholeness, perfection and completeness. Growing up in all aspects in Christ is a life-long exercise in discipling ourselves for the purpose of godliness.
Illustration: "I want to, I need to be more like Jesus. The end of all my prayers, is to care like my Lord cared. My one and only goal, His image in my soul. He’s faithful and He’s true to complete the work He began in you."
Keith Green - famous Christian song writer
We live in a world where the are many cultural, personal, or circumstantial obstacles that tend to stand in the way of anyone who wants to become mature in Christ. Yet, without maturity we cannot become all that God wants us to be. Neither can we know all that the Lord wants us to understand.
Illustration: As water never rises above its level so what we do never rises above what we are...We shall never take people one hair’s breadth beyond our own spiritual attainment. We may point to higher things, but we shall only take them as far as we ourselves have gone.
W.H. Griffith Thomas.
Furthermore, we cannot do all that our heavenly Father wants us to accomplish without ascending the ladders of Biblical maturity. Once certain people attain a level of proficiency in areas like teaching, relationship building, or preaching they assume that they qualify for being a mature Christian. However, the Bible commands us to grow up into ALL aspects into Christ. This holistic approach to maturity is a challenge for everyone who is serious about realizing their maximum potential.
Illustration: C.S. Lewis, on the freedom of reaching maturity:
When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am 50, I read them openly. When I became a man, I put away childish things -- including the fear of childishness and the desire to be grown-up.
Of Other World, Edited by Walter Hooper.
The following steps to maturity are filled with promised blessings and power. Every person’s journey will be unique, but it will involve the following ten levels. Your experiences may differ according to your own background or set of assumptions. Yet, maturity in Christ is the pre-requisite to accomplishing the whole will of God and experiencing His maximum power!
Illustration: You’re never too old to grow up.
Shirley Conran, Savages.
TEN STEPS TO CHRISTIAN MATURITY
1. Exposure - When the truth of the scriptures is revealed to people through teaching, preaching, films, examples, good works, conversations, healing, answers to prayers, or any means of communication, people are able to see the benefits of a mature relationship with Christ. Difficulties often occur when one is unable to present the truth in a credible, relevant, or need meeting way. We need to be open to expose ourselves to all aspects of truth because all truth is God’s truth. A closed mind impedes our ability to see the entire will of God and the full depth, breadth, height and length of God’s love. Teach people the advantages of exposing themselves to all facets of truth.