Summary: Just because someone is spiritually mature does not automatically assure them of easy solutions to their problems. However, the spiritually mature person has the foundational impetus, power, and direction for dealing with all issues of life successfully
How to Mature in Christ
The Bible assures us that if we abide in Jesus, we can ask whatever we wish and it will be done for us. (John 15:7) As Lily and people like her learn to grow up into ALL aspects into Christ, they will be in a position to be able to integrate their spiritual maturity into the social, emotional, cultural, intellectual, religious, family, and interpersonal dimensions of life.
Just because someone is spiritually mature does not automatically assure them of easy solutions to their problems. However, the spiritually mature person has the foundational impetus, power, and direction for dealing with all issues of life successfully. When a person is secure in their identity, it enables them to see every difficulty as an opportunity to increase in their spiritual maturity. Jesus said,
"He prunes every branch in me which does not bear fruit; and He cleanses every branch which does bear fruit, so that it may bear more fruit." I remember a rose plant outside of my house that produced the most beautiful flowers.
Illustration: When I first arrived in Nigeria, consistently, people throughout the entire area would come to my garden seeking permission to pluck a rose for wedding ceremonies, which are numerous in Jos. However, since I failed to prune my plants, the rose bushes were not able to consistently produce their beautiful flowers.
Then, an elderly missionary lady took my rose bushes under her horticultural care. She diligently pruned the rose bushes like a surgeon cutting out dangerous cancerous tissue in a human body. Within months, the rose bushes were again blooming and people returned to my garden. Not only did this teach me the importance of consistency in pruning, but intelligence in knowing where to cut back the non-fruit bearing branches.
The Lord knows how to do both, if we are willing to let him use difficulties to prune away the superfluous aspects of our lives. Let us look at the levels of spiritual maturity that allow us to handle progressively greater challenges in our lives and ministries.
The following is a chart of how to development contextual Christian maturity in people like Lily. It shows six progressive levels of spiritual development in terms of one’s maturity with the word, prayer, fellowship, ministry, character, and faith.
Levels of Spiritual Intakes For Contextual Christian Maturity
1. Maturity in the Scriptures
a. Has respect for the Bible and the words of Jesus
b. Reads the Bible occasionally and has an appreciation for it message
c. Has a regular discipline of reading, studying, and memorizing scripture
d. Meditates on the Scripture and feeds himself from it principles.
e. Develops his own convictions and reasons for what he believes
f. His mind, attitude, and behavior are controlled by the scriptures. He sees the word as relevant to all areas of life and ministry
2. Maturity in Prayer
a. He thanks God for salvation and blessings
b. He prays when he has problems, concerns, and worries.
c. Has a daily time of prayer by himself