Summary: This teaching gives the Christian understanding of his spiritual walk in Christ Jesus.
The Stages of Your Spiritual Walk (Part 1)
Reflections from the book “The Stages of Your Spiritual Walk”
There are three stages to our Christian walk in Christ Jesus. There is the first stage in which we decided to turn our lives over to the Lord; I refer to this as the infant stage. Then there is the second stage in which the Lord begins to shape us in to what He has ordained us to be; this I refer to as the juvenile (immature) stage. Now you come to the final stage, the stage of maturity, Adulthood; this is when God is able to use us for the up building of the kingdom of God.
The way God uses us is not in the same manner as the world would, when we mature in an area of our lives God will use us in that area. For example, say you have become mature in your giving God will begin to use you in the area of giving, even if in the area of loving you have not fully matured yet. The world’s way is to wait until you mature in everything before you are used. What a great lost. . .
In this teaching I will talk about the importance of the first stage of your Christian walk. For some of you, you’ve long passed the first stage; but you’re finding it difficult in the second stage. (I will discuss the second stage in Part 2) Use this concept as a guide to help you understand what you have been lacking up to this point. As for those of you who have just surrendered your lives or to those who have been converted longer, use this teaching to insure yourself you are starting or have started off with the right idea. It is very important that you get a clear understanding of this stage. Poor preparation will either make you or brake you in your spiritual walk. This is one of the most crucial stages of your walk.
Why . . . .
1 because this stage sets the motion for the extent of difficult you will have during your spiritual walk. (Lets face it we all want our walk to be a long one in Christ with as little difficulty as possible.)
2 because we tend to have our focus of expectations in the wrong place; this becomes the most misunderstood of the three stages.
3 because much emphasis is taught on what we will receive from the Lord (i.e. His love, grace, mercy, peace etc.) but little to no teaching’s shared on what the Lord expects of us as new converts. We tend to get that teaching in the second stage; but that is not a good place to start.
The first stage is your time for preparation; you should be getting spiritually prepare for the next stage of your walk. In the next stage the Lord will began to make and mold you into what He has ordained you to be. The next stage will be full of trial, tests, and retests. You may find yourself taking more retest then the original test. (Smile) Example: You may have trouble with your temper; something happens and you fly off the handle; look for the area of your temper to be tested again. It may be weeks or months up the road but your temper will be tested.
How do you get prepared? By learning the word of God? In John 14:26 Christ told the disciples the Father was sending back the Holy Spirit in His name and it would teach them all things and bring all things taught by Him back to their remembrance.
John 14:26 (KJV)
26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
That very same Holy Spirit will bring your teaching back to your remembrance. What you must do is make sure teaching is in your heart and mind. At this stage of the game (First Stage) a lot of your teaching will not make sense. And you will probable challenge 80% of your teaching because you will think you have a better way; the teaching is old fashion; you can pick which teaching you want to follow; you will even think you know what’s best for you; and the list goes on and on. But when all is said and done you will need the proper teaching to come back to; that teaching is the word of God. But again, you must have teaching for the Holy Spirit to bring back to your remembrance. The Christian walk resembles a child getting ready for school. Before a preschooler enters into school hopefully the parent(s) is teaching the child his ABCs, numbers, colors, shapes, his name, his parent(s) and sibling(s) names. Hopefully the preschooler is being taught how to react to the unkind things children do to one another (adversity).