In comments on posts now several weeks old, a lady took offence to me talking about some women needing to grow up. As we discussed, it because clear she hears something in those words I had not intended:
I hear a huge difference between “you need to grow” and “you need to grow up”. I have usually heard and used that phrase with smug, superiority. It sounds like you and Lori hear something different in it.
I doubt she is alone, so I thought I would address it.
Lori and I talk about growing up often, and we are both quick to admit we have plenty of growing up to go. Maturity is a lifelong pursuit, and more than once when I thought I had almost reached maturity in an area I discovered there was a completely new level of maturity possible – and needed. When I look around, I see it’s not just me; I see believers and non-believers alike who have vast areas of immaturity in their lives. Humans have a talent for being mature in one area or relationship and immature in another. All too often, the marriage relationship gets the short end of this, with the greatest level of immaturity reserved for one’s spouse.
This is hardly something new – the apostle Paul spoke of it. In 1 Cor 3:1-3 Paul called the Corinthians “infants in Christ” who could not eat meat (advanced teaching) because they still needed milk. Becoming a Christian doesn’t make us grown up, and reading the Bible doesn’t make us grown up. Growing up is a difficult and often painful process. Still, aside from being a good plan and having great benefits, growing up is what God expects of us.
If you want to read more about growing up, my “Be a Grown-up” category has over 100 posts. Additionally, my must read marriage book for September is about this very issue.