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Acting our Spiritual Age

This afternoon/evening Kristy and I took our 2 year old son to the park. He's a very sociable kid who doesn't know a stranger. Because he's so friendly he ran right up to two older girls who were piling wood chips from the playground onto a piece of playground equipment. These girls were probably in the 5 to 6 year old range. Caleb goes close to them with a big smile, watches what they are doing and like a helpful 2 year old, offers to help. He picks up wood chips and carries them to the pile.

Our new friends weren't interested in his help at all. In fact one of them pushed his hands away and said "No Babies!" the other agreed and said "This is just for big people... no babies can play with us." Caleb didn't care. He's not completely up on the whole system of pecking order and he quickly found something else to do with his time. He played all over the park and it's highly likely that this incident didn't even cause his brain to form a wrinkle for a memory.

But his dad was watching and observing. From about 10 feet away.

I couldn't help but to think that this scene plays itself out week to week on a spiritual level in every church in America. The young in the faith are enthusiastic about God's work and the church so they dive in. Upon doing so those who are 'mature' (by years) in the faith make comments about how foolish the young are and pretend that their (around the block) version is the more spiritual one simply because they have been around longer.

Truth is, my 2 year old son acted older than the 5 year olds. He actually came into the situation wanting to share, cooperate, participate and enjoy the company of others. It was the "older, more mature" who acted like the baby they accused my son of being.

I've often taught that the length of time someone claims Christ is not a sign of spiritual maturity. You can know Christ for 10 years and still be a spiritual infant because most people a decade into the faith are simply repeating the first year 10 times.

Due to this sad reality, the person who knows Christ for 3 years may be far more spiritually mature because they never had to repeat a grade. They are in their third year of maturity and the 10-year veteran would do himself good to take some cues from the "inexperience" of the less seasoned. It's funny how that works.

posted by Tally Wilgis @ Monday, July 23, 2007


At 10:54 PM, Blogger Jaleesa said...

wow tally. thats really intersting. I never thought of that before. I learned something new today.


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