Posted by: trbccoffeebreak | June 7, 2021

When Growth Stalls

“Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience.” Colossians 3:12 (ESV)

While I love fresh fruit and veggies, I’m so lacking in the farming department.  So when I have a question or dilemma, I usually resort to my co-worker (Farmer Fred). He has the best gardens ever and me, will I can’t seem to get even a simple something to make it from farm to table.

My latest quest was a hanging strawberry plant which my mom gave us for our anniversary.  After a few groundhog attacks, we opted to move it inside at night. Protecting, watering and hovering, I anxiously waited for just a glimpse of a strawberry.  And then it happened, tiny green little berries were bursting forth as the white flower petals dropped.  I could already taste their sweetness…..but green was taking forever to turn red.

Into Farmer Fred’s office I marched totally upset. What was I doing wrong?  His answer was simply, “Janet you have to be patient.  It’s an immature plant so the berries will take longer  – you can’t rush the growth process.”

Not exactly what I wanted to hear…but truth just the same.

Wonder how many times I have forgotten this principle when glimpsing the spiritual growth of new believers?  Wonder if I have even contemplated how this process relates to those who have fallen away from their faith and are bravely attempting a come back? Patience is crucial.

Unfortunately, we (self included) have high expectations of those who are “babes” in their faith.  It’s like we anticipate them growing at a rapid pace to catch right up with where we “longtermers” have been.  We often forget it took years of learning, failing, and getting back up to experience depth in our faith. Simply put it’s a journey…one day at a time putting our trust in God and walking in obedience.  How quickly we forget and allow our impatience to discourage others.

We who are spiritually mature should be their biggest cheerleaders.  Rather than judging, we should be there to answer questions, encourage and strengthen new and returning believers as they attempt to grow.  Patience is critical and if we find it lacking then we need to evaluate if we are walking in the Spirit(Galatians 5:22 ) or depending on self. A quick glance in the mirror and we are reminded of God’s longsuffering patience in maturing us. None of us arrived in full bloom filled with the sweet taste of God’s knowledge, discernment and love – it was a process and continues to be a daily dependence on Him.

We all need cheering on….even those of us who have been on this faith journey for years.  So sweet friends let’s embrace patience, release expectations and trust God to complete His work in us and those who have just met Him for the first time.  Let’s choose to be active investors in the lives of those who desire to grow and mature in their faith.


“Father, You are patient, loving and kind.  Transform us to be more like You with every passing day.  Help us to encourage others on their faith journey and resist the urge to judge or grow impatient.”

For His Glory

Janet Martin
TRBC Women’s Life

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