Summary: There is a very powerful relationship between growth and love. Without growth, it will be impossible to share love. A full grown love must be shared.
Dr Martin Luther King Jr once said, and I quote: "We must discover the power of love, the redemptive power of love. And when we do that, we will make of this old world a new world, for love is the only way."
Now we are in the rainy season, and the rains have started, everything has started growing again – rapidly. I’m enjoying my trees – as they are sprouting new growth and blooming. But, I’m also daily weeding and trimming, just to keep everything under control.
Growth is what plants are supposed to do. In fact, every living thing is intended, by God, to grow – including us. There’s a famous saying, “You’re either growing, or dying.”
Love also grows as we grow.
There is a very powerful relationship between growth and love.
A definition of the word, “growth,” is “progressive development.” We were created for progressive development. During the early stage of our life, that growth is primarily physical and learning basic life skills. But, even into adulthood, we are made to continue to generate new growth – emotionally, intellectually, spiritually, and relationally.
Though we may stop growing physically at some point, we still have the capacity for progressive development until we die. We never lose the ability to learn something new, to develop a new skill, to have new experiences, to build new relationships.
To understand the growth and love, we need to look at the life of Jesus
Because The Christian faith was born from Christ.
WHO IS JESUS?
To do this we need to distinguish between Jesus and Christ. They are not the same.
Jesus was a person;
Christ is a title, a theological principle.
Jesus was of history;
Christ is beyond history.
Jesus was human, finite, limited;
Christ is power that is divine, infinite, unlimited.
Jesus had a mother and a father, an ancestry, a human heritage. He was born. He died.
Christ is a principle beyond the capacity of the mind to embrace or human origins to explain.
Our world simply can no longer make contact with the thought forms in which the Church originally defined its Christ in the early ecumenical councils.
That is why an average Christian will say “I am in Christ” yet in reality he/she does not know what it means.
HOW DID JESUS GROW?
Over the years I’ve asked myself, “How did Jesus grow?” In the Gospel of Luke, we find a very interesting passage of scripture that actually gives us a peak into Jesus’ personal growth journey. In fact, it’s the ONLY place in Scripture where we get a picture of what happened between the time Jesus was born and the time he started his public ministry.
Beginning in Luke 2:40 (and through the remainder of the chapter), we see that;
1. Jesus had a Posture of Growth
Luke 2:40 says, “There Jesus grew up, maturing in physical strength and increasing in wisdom, and the grace of God rested on Him.” Verse 52 says, “And Jesus kept on growing—in wisdom, in physical stature, in favor with God, and in favor with others.”
Jesus exhibits an active posture of continual growth.
When you don’t embrace a posture of growth, you simultaneously eliminate the benefits of growth. If you’re not careful, you’ll become irrelevant to the world around you. As Eric Hoffer once observed:
“In times of change, learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.”
Don’t let that happen to you. When what you learned no longer works, what you learned may be your greatest liability. It may be time to unlearn what you’ve learned so you can learn something new.
As John Wooden observed, “It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.”
A posture of growth doesn’t have an expiration date. Too many people graduate learning when they graduate school.
A lifelong posture of personal growth is committed to learning, growing, and expanding right up to the end of life. It’s the pre-requisite for a lifetime of maximum contribution.
2. Jesus’ Areas of Growth
Luke 2:52 says, “And Jesus kept on growing—in wisdom, in physical stature, in favor with God, and in favor with others.” Notice the four areas in which Jesus grew:
• Mentally (wisdom)
• Physically (stature)
• Spiritually (favor with God)
• Socially (favor with others)
This is a good reminder that our growth must reach into the critical areas of life
The meaning of Jesus is found where his being made contact with the being of all human life.
Hence we look at his freedom to be and at the effect that freedom had on others. We look at his security, his fulfillment, his peace, his capacity to give and love and care. These signs of his being become our interpretive clues.