What exactly does growing your faith mean? What does it look like?
As an adult, growing my faith looks different than when I was a child. There are 5 things which have impacted my faith, sending me on a wondrous road that travels up, down, left, and right. This journey tested me, strengthened me, and sent me straight into God's amazing love.
Let's explore those 5 steps that still help me mature:
- Messages and Media
- Personal Ministry
- Special Relationships
- Pivotal Circumstances
1. Messages and Media
"Jesus said, 'Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these'" (Matthew 19:14, New International Version).
As a child, I was crazy in love with Jesus. I was in love with all the Bible stories. I heard them at church. I read The Children's Bible whenever a dentist or doctor's office had a copy.
On the way home, I dreamed of running to Jesus like the children run to our Lord in the "JESUS" film. While my faith was deep, it was still just a child's faith.
As a lover of "Star Trek," "Lost in Space" and the fabulous "Star Wars," I only wish I could have seen the series, "File Zero" as a young girl. It's an animated 14-episode Christian video series set in a dystopian future. It's not just for teens, I loved File Zero!
Books also contributed to my spiritual journey. My daily quiet time always starts with a dive into His word from my collection of Bibles, recorded sermons, podcasts, and a few apps, too.
Regretfully, I turned my back on my beloved Jesus when I left home at 17. A decade full of troubles and career-building followed; but it also included the arrival of a cherished son. With his birth, I returned to God.
Prayer is the first thing that started my faith journey as an adult.
I knew how to pray the Lord's Prayer and bless my meals. But I didn't know how to pray when I journeyed through the dark valley of a sad divorce.
Finally, I prayed a simple prayer out of desperation.
"Lord, show me the way. Amen." I prayed this over and over.
Romans 8:26 reminded me that "… the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans."
Months passed and the dark valley I walked grew lighter. One day, on my knees in church, Jesus showered me with His grace.
My family and friends gathered around me, supporting me and supporting my son. Jesus answered my prayer by sending His people to help me.
Prayer is just talking to God and He loves to hear from us. Our Heavenly Father sees us and loves us deeply. He also understands the world and the time we are living in.
When we write down our prayers and requests, it allows us to go back and see His answers.
3. Personal Ministry
I've found getting involved with my local church grows my faith in amazing ways. It can be relatively easy to get connected. Serving is a great way to make that happen—like helping with parking, cooking at events, or helping in children's ministries.
Getting involved will help you grow. Even a mission trip could lead to a life-changing event. Check out the mission opportunities at Jesus Film Mission Trips®. Wherever you serve, God will use it to change you.
4. Special Relationships
"... 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself'" (Luke 10:27, NIV).
When I returned to God, I attended a local church—surrounded by loving people walking their own faith journeys. I attended a women's Bible study and it changed my life.
I met wonderful business women who surrounded me with Christ's love. My faith grew, surrounded by these loving women and we became lifelong friends. They continue to influence my life to this day.
5. Pivotal Circumstances
"'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future'" (Jeremiah 29:11, NIV).
Life itself can initiate spiritual growth in our lives. Whether it's a lost loved one, job change, or relocating across the country—God uses pivotal events to transform and mature us. We may not see it until years later.
Of course, there are more than 5 ways God grows us. Our journey through faith looks different for each of us. Just know that God loves us more deeply than we can possibly comprehend.
What about you? What are some ways God has helped you to mature in your faith. Share them in the comments below.
Allyson West Lewis is an award-winning author specializing in speculative fiction. After an extensive career as a corporate senior executive, she's written novels and short stories for magazines and anthologies. She adores her husband and family and writes from North Georgia.