The dreaded clothes shopping…
This can either be a great thing or a horrible experience. Are we going because all that hard work in the gym paid off, or because the only thing we have left to wear are leggings, sweatpants, and the infamous elastic-waist pants?
Sometimes growth just downright sucks…. however, sometimes it feels pretty good and is good for us. It’s just that the process of getting there tends to hurt and bring a bit of pain (sometimes minimal and sometimes a lot).
When growing as people or spiritually we tend to lose things, and this is necessary to take you to where you are going in order for you to be what God has called you to be. You see this growing pain is just a test of faith. James 1:3 tells us:
“For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.”
Grow….Tests are never easy, but if you know what to look for and what to study for it makes it a bit easier, when the test arrives.
A lot of the things that we are tested with and we lose when growing are things that we deal with every day. They can be idols (things that have taken our eyes off of God), addictions (smoking, drinking, partying), and sometimes friends/relationships (I wrote about this in my blog piece titled Changing Seasons).
Now these are just a few things that can change when growing, but they affect us just the same. It’s not comfortable to stop smoking, or lose friends/relationships. You tend to want to give up or have just one more smoke, when the anxiety gets high or something stresses you out. That is a fact (trust me I know, but praise God for growth).
Losing friends and relationships hurt even more. It’s because their loss makes it feel like your heart is breaking. Or if you had just changed who were or done just one more thing differently, it would have worked out.
But you will be okay. It is not permanent. It is just a growing pain. Do not go backwards though. People usually (most of the time) pray “God your will be done,” or “Remove the people and things from my life that mean me no good,” yet when He does, we scramble to try and get them back.
In the words of frozen “LET IT GO!”
We have to grow. We cannot stay stagnant. We were meant to produce fruit, and in order to do that we have to change and grow.
“He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more (John 15:2)”
God is getting rid of the things that we don’t need and that are holding us back because it is a time for growth. He is cleaning up the things and areas that are producing and helping us grow into wonderfully powerful people.
So, the truth is we have two choices. We can leave the fallen branch where it lay and embrace the growth, pain and all. Or we can pick that branch up, stick it in a bag and carry it around with us.
You see, truth is the sad fact that a lot of us are walking around with spiritual or physical (depending on what branch was cut – friendship, job, drinking, worry, etc) bags, backpacks, knapsacks, or suitcases full of branches that God has cut off that we refuse to let go. Even though it is not doing anything for us anymore.
©Words With Faith2017