We started attending a new Sunday school class last week. Yesterday I was profoundly caught off guard by a question our new teacher posed.
"What has your spiritual growth looked like in the past year? Has there been any?"
She followed this up by a painful, yet powerful
"If it takes you awhile to find what it has been, have you really been living for and growing closer to the Lord?"
As I have reflected over this over the past 24 hours, the question kept coming back to me "if you're not growing closer to Him are you growing further away?"
Ironically, all of this research I have been whining about lately has been centered around improving balance. One thing that I have learned about it is that there is no such thing as standing still. There is always maintenance required to remain in a balanced or homeostatic place. Your body is always correcting to acclimate to its surroundings.
When standing still, this acclimation is called postural sway. The less postural sway you have, the better your balance. When using a force plate, it is seen as a line measuring the change of your Center of Pressure.
The left side image shows the least postural sway, the right side shows excessive. picture from here
All of that to be said, we are NEVER standing completely still, sure you can look still, but your body is working really hard to maintain that state.
I would argue the same is true for our spiritual lives. While we may appear to be completely still, the truth is that we are working really hard to stay in that equilibrium and dependent relationship with the Lord, the harder we work, the stronger our balance gets, and the more difficult it becomes for distractions to cause sway or even a fall.
However, it takes work, a lot of it. Which athletes have been shown to have the best balance? Gymnasts, naturally. Why? Because they practice improving their balance regularly.
This applies to us as Christians, it isn't easy, life gets busy, it takes intentionally practicing getting into the Bible, intentionally taking time to pray, and then intentionally taking time to listen for the Lord's response.
I know, this is not a perfect analogy, but it hit me like a ton of bricks this morning when reading 2 Peter and I had to share!
Here are the verses that convicted and motivated me to keep moving forward this morning:
For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6 and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7 and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. 8 For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins.
10 Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure. For if you do these things, you will never fall, 11 and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
2 Peter 1:5-11
Hope you have a wonderful Monday and enjoy the rest of your week :)