THREE ESSENTIALS FOR GROWING IN CHRIST
God's desire for you is to receive His Son with all your heart through faith. When you do, there are three critical steps to take. These are the ABCs for Christian growth.
A – Always Prayer
Spend time with God every day in prayer.
“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1Thessalonians 5:16-18).
B – Bible Reading
Read the Bible Daily
"These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so” (Acts 17:11).
C – Church Attendance
It is so critical that you get plugged in to a local Bible believing church. Surround yourself with Christians who can guide you and be a quality example for you to follow as well as hold you accountable. Your church will not be perfect, but they will be understanding and compassionate, stand in the gap when difficult times come (and they will come), and inspire you to grow in Christ.
”Not forsaking or neglecting to assemble together [as believers], as is the habit of some people, but admonishing (warning, urging, and encouraging) one another, and all the more faithfully as you see the day approaching” (Hebrews 10:25)
If you would like more information about getting to know Christ better, we hope you'll go to our Free Resources page. We would also recommend a couple of informative websites that we've found will inform and inspire you:
startingwithGod.com | growinginChrist.com
Do you want to know God's Plan for your life?
YOU CAN GROW CLOSER TO CHRIST ... HOW?
To Grow in Christ you must LIVE for Christ and not let sin win?
Have you ever heard a charge from a sermon or a Bible Study lesson concerning how we are to live for Jesus and wondered to yourself, Yes, but how do I do it? I want to obey, but I just don’t know how to overcome—how to stop doing the bad things and start doing the good things.
“Yes, but how” is a legitimate question.
I read the Psalms each morning as part of my daily quiet time. A few days ago, as I was reading Psalm 26, it was as if the Lord said, “This is the answer to the ‘yes, but how’ question. You can only walk in My truth when you set My lovingkindness (My faithful, loyal love) before your eyes.”
"For Your lovingkindness is before my eyes, And I have walked in Your truth." Psalm 26:3
Everything in the Christian life flows from God’s love for us. 1 John 4:19 tells us, “We love, because He first loved us.” I cannot love God with all my heart or love my neighbor as myself until I first receive His love for me. To be sure, it is utterly amazing that God would love sinners like you and me … but it’s true! He does love us. And if we are going to walk in victory with Him, we must keep the truth of His love before our eyes constantly.
THE LIAR IS AT WORK
Jesus said the devil is “a liar, and the father of lies” (John 8:44). Satan works overtime to try to get us to believe the lie that God doesn’t love us. Perhaps He did at one time, but we have sinned too greatly for Him to love us any longer. We readily believe this lie because it matches up with our feelings. You see, when you are guilty of some heinous, terrible sin (abortion, adultery, betrayal, theft, sexual immorality or perversion), you feel unclean, unworthy, and unforgivable. It makes perfect sense that God would stop loving you given the wretched things you have done. But that “perfect sense” is a lie.
Romans 8:38-39 reminds us that nothing “shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Nothing! If Peter’s three-fold denial of Jesus did not cause him to fall from God’s love, there is nothing you and I could ever do to cause the Lord to stop loving us. It is an undeniable truth of Scripture.
So how do you and I live the Christian life? How do we obey the commands of God and walk in the light? We start each day rejoicing in His love—as the song says, “I am loved by the King, and it makes my heart want to sing.” When we truly believe we are unconditionally loved, we are set free to love God and obey His Word. We no longer view His commands as restrictions on our lives; rather we see them as loving reminders of what is good and not good for us. Sin loses a lot of its allure when you set God’s love before your eyes.
Let me encourage you to mentally visit the cross on a regular basis. The cross of Christ proves His great love for you. God did not spare His Son for you, and Jesus willingly gave His life—all because He loves you. Jude says, “Keep yourselves in the love of God” (Jude 1:21). Reject the devil’s big lie that God doesn’t love you. The truth is He does. And that truth will set you free.
Pastor Jeff Schreve