Thursday, October 13, 2011

Blog # 195 Growth

Blog # 195 Growth See the lilies of the field, Jesus said, how they grow. Certainly if God creates the lilies of the field with such potential for growth and beauty as they possess, how much more confidence we should have in the process of our own spiritual growth. With reasonable care our spirit, faith, generosity, and the beauty of our soul in love with God will grow. I once read of a woman who visited the seashore on a particular occasion. She was feeling blue. There was little evident meaning in her life. Things seemed to be going around in small circles, monotonously, with little being achieved. Her life seemed like the vast expanse of sand before her, flat, the same every day with little that mattered. Then she discovered a particular shell that intrigued her. She picked it up and began to study it in detail. The lines, color and shape were all beautiful when you studied them. The shell seemed to be the work of an artist. She went from the shell to the sand to the ocean to the sky to God and back to herself. She came away from the beach with a new and impressive insight into the fact God was with her, as He was in the shell, designing her life with no less care wisdom or love than that with which He designed the shell. She merely had to discover it. She was encouraged. She grew in wisdom. We can be sure God is with us too, extending His invitation to us to grow in wisdom before Him, to grow in our friendship with Him and to grow in our awareness of the power of His love in our lives. We remind ourselves that growth is not always manifested nor exhausted in an increase either in numbers or in volume, such as you might say of a pile of stones which 'grows' by adding to its numbers, or our prayer life might increase by adding to the length or number of our prayers. Growth is not just increase but development. To grow in prayer we might indeed grow in the number of times we pray, but also grow in the quality of our prayer. You might greet the mail carrier fifty times a year and your son once as he comes home from service in the Army in a far-away place. The difference in the greeting is a difference in quality as well as in number. All the fifty greetings of the mail carrier do not add up to the greeting of your son. So it is with God and our life of prayer. Father, may our love for You deepen as the days of our lives go on. May we grow in goodness before you and may we not be distracted by the things that should remind us of You. In Jesus' Name we pray, Amen!

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