I know I’m not where I need to be. I can feel Him calling me to come closer. And sadly, I can feel I am resisting.
Daily I struggle with anxieties about the future. My husband? My kids? My health? I have thoughts that cause my mind to become unsettled and my focus to change from my ultimate goal: pleasing my Lord. You see, I am not my own, I’ve been bought with a price. And as a result, I am to pursue holiness.
I do know how to move forward. I learned Peter’s Practical Approach to Christian Maturity in my twenties. I just haven’t applied it too well, recently.
The transforming power of the Holy Spirit is available to all who are in Jesus Christ:
His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.
For by these [His own glory and excellence] He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, so that by them [His precious and magnificent promises] you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust.
Everything we need for life and godliness has been given to us through His divine power. And He called us by His own glory and excellence. By His glory and excellence we have been granted precious and magnificent promises. It is through these promises we become partakers of the divine nature and we have escaped corruption.
Did you get that? It’s all based upon His power, His glory and His excellence. And because He is these things, He calls us to become partakers of the divine nature.
Then, are we divine? Does He “zap” us into “godly beings”? I think yes, and no.
Now, don’t worry, I’m not getting “new age” on you. I do not believe we become little gods. His divine nature in me does not make me divine. But He does give me an inner voice, through His indwelling Spirit, who convicts me when I am not walking in His way. He does give me the power to walk in the way He desires.
I believe the scripture teaches I have been changed – metamorphised – from old to new. The bullfrogs and butterflies type of change. I’m still me just, hopefully, growing more mature.
Let me quote:
Although the author has borrowed the expression partakers of the divine nature from paganism, his meaning is clearly Christian. He does not mean apotheosis (man becoming a god) in the pagan sense, but rather that believers have an organic connection with God. Because of such a connection, God can truly be called our Father. Conceptually, this bears the same meaning as Paul’s “in Christ” formula. The author’s statement, though startling at first, is hardly different from Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians that they “may be filled up to all the fullness of God” (3:19). (NETBible)
So now that we see who we are “in Christ,” Peter moves on to explain what we are TO DO (the practical part):
Now for this reason also, applying all diligence,
in your faith supply moral excellence,
and in your moral excellence, knowledge,
and in your knowledge, self-control,
and in your self-control, perseverence,
and in your perseverence, godliness,
and in your godliness, brotherly kindness,
and in you brotherly kindness, love.
For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitul in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these qualities is blind or short-sighted, having forgotten his purification from his former sins. Therefore, brethren, be all the more diligent to make certain about His calling and choosing you; for as long as you practice these things, you will never stumble; for in this way the entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will be abundantly supplied to you. ~2 Peter 1:2-11
As long as you practice these things…that list up there…you will never stumble. But you will become more certain of His calling and choosing you…and you will gain an abundant entrance into His eternal kingdom.
People, I want that! I do. And I see where I’m stumbling. It’s in “the how” of the teaching…applying all diligence. I have not been diligent to add these things to my life. I’ve not been diligently pursuing holiness.
Do you desire to grow, to move forward in the Lord? Do you find you are stagnant at times, not fully pursuing Him? Have you become blind or short-sighted? Maybe you’ve been stumbling along, like me?
If so, choose with me to follow more closely Peter’s Practical Approach to Christian Maturity.
Maybe we’ll grow closer to one another, as well.
That is the natural progression of the list.