How to become a Spiritual Self-Feeder

"Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation" 1 Peter 2:2

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Newborn babies have no trouble getting what they need.  As a mother, you learn to discern the difference between, "I need to be fed." and "I need a clean diaper."  You learn the tone in their cry when something is hurting them and when they just need to be held and reassured. You're quick to provide whatever is needed for you newborn, however if your 5 year old is asking for what they need the same way they did when they were newborns - crying non-stop until they get what they want, you've got a problem.

At some point, we must teach our precious little ones to do for themselves. From holding their own bottle, to eat solid food as we spoon it into their mouths, to feeding themselves using utensils and eventually learning how to pour their own cereal with milk or make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  Eventually, they are fully capable of preparing a meal for themselves.  They are even capable of choosing between junk food and healthy, life-giving food.

As a new believer in Christ, we choose to accept Him as our personal Savior. We are hungry for more of Him, more of His word. We want to be around other believers, so we're there every time the church doors are open.  We read Christian books, listen to Christian radio stations. We're ravenous for more of Him.  We're quick to ask questions about spiritual and hunt for the answers. We lean heavily on those who are mature in their spiritual walk. Those who know how to "walk the walk" because we want to grow in Him.

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That's okay when you are a "newborn" in Christ, but at some point, we need to wean ourselves from depending on others. We need to learn how to go to read the Bible for ourselves, instead of fully depending on the preacher to tell us what it says and how to apply it to our lives.  Instead, we should be leaning on the Holy Spirit - praying before we dig into the Word that He will reveal more of Himself to us through the Word and that He will show us how to apply it - how to be "doers" of the Word and not just "hearers" only.
"Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says." James 1:22
Not that we wouldn't need to still learn from those who are more mature in their faith than us, because we can learn much from their example, but we need to be able to stand on our own two spiritual feet, so that we can be a help and an example to those who are coming up behind us in their own new spiritual walk.

So, let's take a minute and examine ourselves.
  • Do you spend some time daily reading your Bible and praying?
  • Do you set spiritual leaders on such high pedestals that if they fell, you would be pulled down with them?
  • Do you place too many demands for spiritual nourishment on those around you?
  • Have you realized that we are to continually exercise habits that will cause us to grow in Christ?
  • Do you reach out to those who are newer in the faith than you are to help them grow and mature in their faith?
  • Would you say you are someone who has learned how to feed themselves spiritual food, or are you still dependent on others to hold your hand?
  • How did you learn to walk on your own?
What are your thoughts on this subject?
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Gigantic Mustard Seed Faith

Are you a Mountain Mover?

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In Matthew 17:20, Jesus says that if we have faith the size of a mustard seed, (which is one of the smallest seeds of all), we can move mountains.

Well, so far, I haven't been able to cast a mountain into the sea, so it makes me wonder just how small my faith is. That can really bum me out until I remember that the focus is not my faith, but the faith I have in the One to whom I pray.  Do I believe that God is able to do great things? To move impossible mountains in my life?

Our prayers often reflect the size of our faith. I heard a quote recently that made me think about the way I pray...

We should be storming heaven with prayers asking God for the impossible, not the mundane! ~Oscar Muriu 

...and I heard another guy say we should be praying...

Big hairy audacious prayers!
Why don't we pray for things that seem beyond reach? Things that seem impossible? Miracles?

Maybe it's because we're afraid that if we do and it doesn't happen, it will shake our faith in God.  Remember, we're praying and asking God to answer our prayers and sometimes (for our own sake or for His own purposes), he says "No" to our prayer.  That's okay.  We ultimately want his will, not our own.

So, why bother to ask for the miracle?  Because the answer might just be YES, but if we never have the courage to ask, we may never see His miracle-working power.

It reminds me of a story I heard about a man who went to Heaven and while Jesus was giving him a tour, He opened the door to a room stacked high with beautifully wrapped gifts of every size.  When he asked Jesus what they were, He answered, "Gifts waiting to be prayed for."

I don't know about you, but I want everything God wants to give me...and NOTHING that He doesn't want me to have.  So, I'll pray for those things that I believe to be within His will, like healing miracles, financial miracles and salvation of those I love who seem so very far from ever wanting to come to God, the salvation of my city or - and here's a biggie - godly government officials who make decisions based on what's right, not what's beneficial to them - because I believe in miracles and because I'm okay with God saying no.  I know that He will only do what's best, so that might mean I don't get what I think is best, but I will not limit him by being afraid to ask for the big stuff.

How about you? Do you pray mundane, anemic, namby-pamby prayers or do you really connect with God and seek him for depth and width and length and heighth - for the things that are beyond what you could do for yourself.  Do you ask for those things your heart longs for? Are you afraid to ask for those things because you're afraid he might say no?

What if He says YES!


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