Come Grow with Me
Thirty-six and a half years ago when my son John was born, I remember holding him and wishing, like all new fathers, that I could give him the world and protect him from any harm that might come his way. (I have had the same feeling as each of my children came into my life.) I immediately realized that if I were to do that, he would not grow up to be a mature, independent, self-sufficient man, and I would have to spend the rest of my life protecting him and giving things to him. So, I forced myself to let him “grow up,” limiting my role to loving him, teaching him discipline and perspective, and helping guide him through all of the crisis points in life.
Another thought that flashed through my mind thirty-six years ago was that “this must be how God feels about His children, about us, about me.” In John 3, we see that as we come to faith in Christ, we are “born anew” (John 3:3). That means that the part of us that is designed to relate to God, which had died because of the poison of sin in our lives, has been reborn. We begin our new relationship with God as we begin our life, as “a spiritual baby.” Thus, as the Bible instructs us to do in numerous places, we have some spiritual growing up to do.
Starting the second Sunday in February, I began a sermon series that will take us through Lent that is focused on what it means to grow spiritually and how we go about it. (If you missed any of the first three sermons, you can find them at www.tustinpresbyterian.org.) I hope that as we engage this topic, we will grow in ways we never thought possible and that as we do, we will see the face of God more clearly as we walk with our Lord toward Easter. I invite you to come and grow with me this Lenten Season!
Steve Ranney, Pastor