Imagine a classic summertime backyard barbecue. Can you smell the burgers, brats and baby back ribs on the grill? Maybe you’ll cap the night with a classic marshmallow roast over an open fire.
Now imagine you have just one minor problem…you don’t have any teeth! You’ll miss out on the char-grilled delicacies because you haven’t matured to a place where you have what’s necessary to enjoy them.
Our spiritual lives can be just like this! We can stagnate and miss out on opportunities because we haven’t matured.
You see, God not only showers us with a Father’s blessing, He invites us to grow up by modeling our lives after Him. With our new identity and spiritual DNA, we’re called to grow up to be like our Heavenly Dad. As Ephesians 5:1 puts it: “Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children.”
We’re invited and called to be like our Father. We look up to Him and notice how He does things – the way He talks, moves, and answers. We put our feet in His footsteps.
What’s incredible is that God hasn’t left us on our own to figure out what to do; He gives us His Holy Spirit’s power to lead and guide us. As a perfect Father, God participates in our lives. He’s saying to you and me, “Here, let Me show you how to do that.”
Here are three markers to think about, to aim for, as we imitate Him and grow into spiritual maturity.
1. Awaken: to who we are and whose we are. As the popular worship anthem says, we’re no longer slaves….to abandonment, fear, unworthiness, insecurity, abuse, addiction, dread, comparison, or loneliness…we are children of God!
2. Accept: the implications of our new genetic makeup. We throw off the sin and old ways of life and run toward the new and good things God is calling us to do.
3. Adopt: the behavior and character of God. Study how God moves and works. Devour his Word. Talk with him. Emulate the pattern of his ways.
You have been adopted by a perfect, loving Father—now go be like Dad!