To be Christian is to choose to be like Christ. We judge our growth in the Lord by how much more we look like the Lord from one year to the next. We achieve this growth by living His teachings and following His example. Call it new life.
At least five behaviors frustrate this:
- Aversion to truth
- Refusal to take responsibility for our own behavior and direction
- Reaction to people, especially those who are different or with whom we disagree
- Extreme need to be approved and liked by others
- Addiction to quick-fix approaches so we don't have to make real change
These approaches leave us stuck and underdeveloped. They keep us from resembling Jesus more fully. But there are birth pangs happening in us. As it was in Genesis so it is in Revelation, God is breathing over us, "See, I am making all things new." John 21:5