Personal growth is also known as self-improvement and self-growth. It comes from a purposeful plan and continued effort to become holistically a better person. Forbes published an article on “7 Powerful Ways to Accelerate Your Personal Growth,” but they left one main component out.
I agree that personal growth requires a lifelong commitment to learning, giving of your time, exposing yourself to other cultures, pursuing creativity, prioritizing health, evaluating where your shortcomings are and how to move forward, and being smart with time management. However, to truly grow as an individual you can not neglect your spiritual well-being.
Yes, prioritize your health (mental and physical), learn new things that expose you to others and other ways of thinking, give BIG and be humble. But never forget, you are more than a physical being operating in a physical community with limited abilities. God has created you for a purpose. A large part of the journey you are on right now requires an awareness of His presence and a desire to follow where He leads. Personal growth can only take you so far if you neglect to include spirituality.
Whether you are a Jesus-follower or not, the fact that you are here means you are curious to know if there is something bigger than just us.
If you are a Jesus-follower you wear a label. Marc Alan Schelske discusses how our actions, words and relationships might align or contradict what we claim. To make sure the label and the person match, personal growth is not optional.
Let’s break out the big words. When we first hear and believe that Jesus took all of our sins to the cross, died and rose from the grave (and we accept it for the gift that it is), the label Christian becomes ours. Justification happens in this moment. It is the act of God forgiving our sin and seeing us as righteous because of the work of Jesus. Making sure we live into that label, that we commit to personal growth, that is sanctification.
Think of it this way: When you arrive at a work conference and check in, you are given a name tag that identifies you as part of the group. Your justification for being there is that name tag. It is proof you belong. The conversations and interactions you have within that event will either show others that you are a part of their group or make them question why you are there. If you are actively working to conform to the image the label claims, then you are doing the work of sanctification.
Personal growth for the Christian is not optional. You and I have been given a gift; we have been labeled and counted righteous. It is our job to continually invest and follow the lead of the Holy Spirit in order to conform to the image of Jesus, to become more Christlike.
To explore what it means to be a Jesus-follower (aka Christian) and still feel free to ask the hard questions around faith, join us online, in one of many community groups or at one of our two locations every Sunday morning. We can’t wait to see you!