Three Layers of Maturity

Here are three layers of maturity:

Dependence

Proverbs 3:5-6 (KJV): “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart: and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

How many of you trust God? Likely, you would all say you do and be right. To a point. But does your behavior make you guilty of trusting God completely? It’s not as easy as it sounds.

Part of our problem is we compare God to people sometimes, which is a mistake. The God Peter wrote about in 1 Peter 5:7 is the same God we serve today. We can and should depend on God. He is dependable.

Independence

Galatians 6:5 (KJV) “For every man shall bear his own burden.”

Independence is where we excel. It’s the American way. We need to be independent, but not in a way that we lose our dependence on God. That’s our challenge.

Our independence shows up in the choices we make. We get to choose how our needs will be met. We get to choose whether we turn to God or away from God.

Interdependence

Galatians 6:2 (KJV) “Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.”

Luke chapter 10 tells the story of the good Samaritan. We cringe when we read about the priest and the Levite. We rejoice and revel in identifying with the Samaritan. But who wants to be the guy in the ditch, beaten and bloody and left for dead? Without him, there would be no story. 

What if he had crawled under some foliage in order not to be seen? After all, he should not have been going down to Jericho in the first place. The shame and the stigma surrounding that journey were significant. 

What if he had put some Band-Aids on, bought some new clothes, waited till the bruising dissipated, then acted like nothing had happened? What about the deeper wounds?

We don’t mind helping carry someone else’s burden, but who is willing to allow someone to help carry your burden? Most of us are happy to help but would not admit to needing help. 

Interdependency can’t only work one way or one direction. Interdependency means that while you depend on me, I depend on you. It is much more challenging to receive help than to give help.

Through my years of doing clinical work, I know the demographic that struggles the most to ask for help is the preacher’s wife. Then, the preacher. 

More than ever, we live in a time when we need each other.

We need always to be dependent on our Heavenly Father; we need to be independent, and we need to be interdependent. Three layers of maturity. Each layer serves a purpose.

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