Friday, October 14, 2011

Growing Out and Up

Every time Allie is with us there are signs of change, signs of growth. Even though she is quite petite, there's no denying she is a growing girl. Her pants from last winter are too snug, her long-sleeve shirts are creeping up her arms, and some of her shoes are officially retired.

Because of this continual growth process (and the fact I love to shop :)) I'm always in a state of shopping for Allie. Anytime I'm at Target, Nordstrom Rack, or the mall I peruse the sale racks in her size just to see if there's any great deals. If I find a cute sweater on sale in June, I'll pick it up for her to wear in the fall and vice versa for summer stuff.

Although this constant out-growing is sometimes frustrating, it's something I anticipate and plan for. This past week as I have noticed Allie's physical growth a lot, it's surprisingly made me turn my attention to my own spiritual growth. It's made me wonder:

"How am I changing? What am I out-growing? How am I anticipating spiritual growth in my life?" like I anticipate Allie's physical growth? The truth of the matter is signs of growth shouldn't stop when you complete puberty and reach adulthood. Our whole lives should be in a constant state of change - growing, maturing, and resembling more of Christ and less of us.

This reality struck me as quite profound in that we should look forward to out-growing our old ways - our anger, greed, worry, fear, and selfishness, even though it is painful, and anticipate the new life, the "new clothes" we get by dying to ourselves daily and surrendering more and more of ourselves to Christ for His glory alone.

For all you moms out there who are constantly tending to growing kiddos and have tiny drops of time for yourself, I challenge you to stop and think:

"What have I left behind? What am I growing towards? What new clothes in Christ am I wearing I wasn't last summer or winter?" every time you change the clothes in your child's closet or see that sleeve creeping towards their elbow. My hope is that this seasonal self-assessment can help us abandon seasons of spiritual stagnation and help us anticipate our own growth towards a fuller relationship with Jesus.

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