Study Reveals Big Percentage of US Christians Are Not ‘Spiritually Mature’ by Bill White for Charisma News
I would like to say I was shocked at the results of a study we conducted recently, showing that over half of U.S. Christians are not very mature spiritually—ranking somewhere equivalent to a toddler or younger when compared with physical growth stages. However, as a pastor, I have observed that many of us can tend to get stalled out in our spiritual journeys, so I wanted to share some keys for moving forward.
As Christians grow in spiritual maturity, it becomes necessary that we begin to take responsibility for our own choices. As we continue to feed on the Word of God, we’re likely to come across certain passages that call for major changes in our established habits and behaviors—and when our fleshly, immature “toddler” mentality kicks in, we may resist what we’re reading. We demand to know why, or we stomp our feet and say “No!”
A Toddler Needs Discipline
Unfortunately, some growing believers tend to stall out in this defiant “terrible twos” spiritual stage. Some don’t like to be told what to do or how to act. Some remain so focused on themselves that they stay blind to the rights and needs of others. Some just expect everything to be easy after committing their lives to Christ, and they’re ready to cash in their chips when they start hearing about the realities of suffering and sacrifice.
But a loving parent never gives up on a growing child, even though he or she can be quite difficult. Neither does God desert one of His children who acts in defiance. It’s persistent, continuing love that draws the child back to the Father and the family of believers. This love, however, may also require some discipline. One truth of Scripture that needs to be emphasized is that spiritual discipline is motivated by love.