I have a friend who, at one point, was a self-confessed shopping addict. Recently, his family realized that this activity had stopped, though he hadn't intentionally curtailed it. Why, they wondered, did his longing to acquire more goods seem to dissolve?
The reason was that my friend had become more satisfied with the Lord. He no longer needed fulfillment from what the world had to offer. What a terrific illustration of growth in Christ.
In addition to finding fulfillment in God, there are many other growth indicators that are noticeable to the believer. For instance, offering forgiveness becomes easier over time. Consider our Savior, who asked God to forgive even those who crucified Him on the cross.
Also, as we mature, our faith will increase. God loves us, and He gracefully and gently builds our confidence in Him. Then, as our trust grows, we realize how faithful He truly is--which grows our assurance even more.
Another mark of a closer walk with Christ is an expanding concern for others' spiritual condition. And finally, as our relationship with the Lord deepens, we will increasingly desire to obey Him. This desire is born not out of fear but out of love for our heavenly Father. Similarly, when we do sin, our hearts will become saddened and repentant.
Are you satisfied spiritually? Or do you have a growing, insatiable hunger for more of Jesus? Friend, if you think that you've come far enough in your journey with Christ, you have made a terrible mistake. You are missing great fulfillment and the excitement that comes from getting closer to Him.
For more biblical teaching and resources from Dr. Charles Stanley, please visit www.intouch.org.
Used with permission from In Touch Ministries, Inc. © 2009 All Rights Reserved.