Summary: Part 3 of this series focuses on why we need to be able to share our faith with others and why it's a sign of our growth in Christ.
It’s Time To Grow Up Part 3
I want to tell you a story. A man was at home one day and realized that he was hungry. He got in his car and went to a restaurant for dinner. Once he had eaten his food he asked his waiter to box up his leftovers so that he could take them home for later. When he got home he placed the food on his counter and got busy doing something else and forgot all about it. A few days later when he wanted a snack he remembered the food he had brought home and went to get it. When he opened the box, the food had spoiled. Have you ever done that? Spiritually we do this often. You see, we come to Church, get fed the word (even in milk form), eat as much as we can and then leave with leftovers to share. However, when we get home, we lay the Word down and forget about it until something makes us think about it. Then when we remember what we feasted on at Church on Sunday, we try to go back to find those leftovers only to find that it is no longer eatable. Why, because you did not continue to feed upon it while it was still good. You forgot about it and the Word spoiled in your hearts as you did not use it. I am not saying the Word was bad, but because you could not remember it after Sunday it became “unusable” for you.
Remember the parable Jesus told to His disciples about the sower of the seeds. Let me read a few verses for you. “…….Behold, the sower went out to sow; and as he sowed, some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up. Others fell on the rocky places, where they did not have much soil; and immediately they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil. But when the sun had risen, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. Others fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out. And others fell on the good soil and yielded a crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty.” (Matthew 13:3-8) The disciples did not fully understand the parable so Jesus explained it to them. He said, “Hear then the parable of the sower. When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is the one on whom seed was sown beside the road. The one on whom seed was sown on the rocky places, this is the man who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; yet he has no firm root in himself, but is only temporary, and when affliction or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he falls away. And the one on whom seed was sown among the thorns, this is the man who hears the word, and the worry of the world and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful. And the one on whom seed was sown on the good soil, this is the man who hears the word and understands it; who indeed bears fruit and brings forth, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty.” (Matthew 13:18-23) This, my friends, is an example an example of a baby Christian versus a mature one. The Word of God cannot be snatched from the hearts of a mature Christian because they are always studying and seeking His face. However, baby Christians do not pay attention to what they are learning so the Word is constantly being stolen from them. They also stress about things of this life and therefore cannot focus on the Word so what they initially receive gladly is pushed aside when they are pressed on what they believe. Finally, a baby Christians allows life (jobs, making money, careers, family issues, etc.) to choke the Word from them so they do not grow. A mature Christian receives the Word, allows it to grow within them and they, through that Word within them, bear fruit – live a life that draws others to Christ. Do you see this difference?