During most of the 2000’s it seemed every time we turned around we were buying a new car. Each time we did, I took a picture of our grandson Danny (who is now in high school) behind the wheel. It’s fun to look at those early photos and see how he grew from year to year.
I like to look back over the last few years and see how I’ve grown, too. I can’t measure it with pictures, though. In Ephesians 4:13 we are told to “become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ” (NIV). The following verses describe how this maturity looks. “Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves,” and we will “speak the truth in love” and walk in unity with other believers.
Of course I fall short in many areas, and I know I’ll never attain the completeness spoken of in these verses. Yet, I want to be sure I’m moving toward it. I find comfort in knowing that God has not let me stay the same as I was. He has given me exciting, challenging things to do that I could never accomplish on my own, helping me grow in my trust of Him. He has provided experiences, like my trip to Israel, that expand my knowledge and understanding of Him. And He has walked with me through situations I could never have anticipated, bringing me out of them stronger and more sure of His love and grace than ever before.
The Holy Spirit has been my comforter, teacher, and helper as promised in John 16. God’s love and His ways of showing it continue to amaze me. As I look back over these last few years, I can say, like the Apostle Paul, “Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me” (Philippians 3:12). My favorite Bible teacher says it this way: “I haven’t arrived yet, but praise God I’ve left the station!” And, I might add, I’m on the right track!