From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham
We’ve all met people who were adults in terms of years yet acted like children: irresponsible, inconsiderate, impulsive, unwise in the decisions they make. They’re immature no matter their age. On a human level, we know maturity isn’t just a matter of age. A mature person isn’t just physically mature but has grown up emotionally and socially. They’ve learned to be responsible and to realize that their actions have consequences.
In a similar way, spiritual maturity isn’t just a question of how long we’ve been a Christian. Sadly, far too many Christians never grow and develop in their faith. They’re in spiritual limbo. Someone may look at their spiritual lives five years ago and then look today and see little difference. They’re like the Christians to whom Paul spoke: “I … could not address you as spiritual people … but as infants in Christ” (1 Corinthians 3:1 ESV).
When a child fails to develop into a capable, mature adult emotionally, it’s tragic. Many times, it’s because the adults in their lives have set the bar low; many are never taught that there’s an expectation to “grow up.”
More tragic is a Christian who fails to develop spiritually. We weren’t meant to remain spiritual babies. Instead, God’s goal for us is spiritual maturity (Hebrews 6:1). The Bible also urges, “Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation” (1 Peter 2:2, NIV). The goal of a child’s life is maturity—and the goal of a Christian’s life is spiritual maturity.
(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)