5 More Attributes of a Spiritually-Mature PersonFebruary 7, 2014
Spiritual growth is not the product of your age; it is the position of your heart. It is sad to think that many people will live their entire lives and never grow in the grace of God. At the end of the day all that really matters is your relationship with the Lord, and your relationship with others (you can hang the entire law on that premise). Therefore, if we are not working diligently on those relationships we merely exist, we never expand. Fred Smith said, “I don’t think God is as interested in our success as much as He is our maturity.” I concur. True success is measured by the depth, width, and volume of your spiritual growth.
A few days ago we looked at five attributes of a spiritually-mature person: a life of devotion, a disdain for sin, a passion for Christ and the Gospel, a heart for souls, and a willingness to serve. Here are five more characteristics of a person who is growing in their walk with the Lord.
1. A Spirit of Kindness.
I like what Ken Blanchard said about kindness, “Nice guys may appear to finish last, but usually they are running in a different race.” As I said in the last post, “Spiritual maturity doesn’t have to breed snobbery.” You do not have to jeopardize your convictions for kindness; on the contrary, you will be more influential with your convictions if what you do is done with a spirit of grace. Charles Buxton said, “You have not fulfilled every duty, unless you have fulfilled that of being pleasant.” Spiritually-mature people are pleasantly kind.
2. A Willingness to Listen.
The greatest asset in a man’s ministry and life are his ears. Those who fail to listen are failing to grow. Or as Hans Finzel put it, “If you do not listen, you will have nothing to say.” People who always monopolize the conversation can appear self-centered and self-serving. I have found in my ministry that people are not always looking for advice; they are just looking for a friend to share their problems with. Your ears may actually do more talking than you realize. Listening speaks volumes to those in need.
3. A Heart for Giving.
A spiritually-mature person gives more of his life away than he can ever accumulate in a savings account. Someone growing in grace not only recognizes the need to financially support the work of God’s kingdom, but perhaps more importantly, they embrace the call to sacrificially give of themselves. Sharing what you have is actually greater than what you have. Tozer said, “Not by its size is my gift judged, but by how much of me is in it.” As the old saying goes, “God will give you to give, more than He will give you to keep.” How much of your life are you giving away?
4. A Desire to Mentor.
Growing is infectious and influential. A person growing in the grace of God has a desire to assist others in their walk. They make investments in the lives of others. They give advice to those looking for direction. They give time for those in need of attention. They give love to those looking for acceptance. I praise God for the men in my life who have offered their wisdom and knowledge to help me grow in my own relationship with the Lord. Mentoring expands your life for generations to come.
5. A Testimony of Trust.
“To be trusted” said George MacDonald, “is a greater compliment than to be loved.” Think about those people in your life that you honestly and genuinely trust. Odds are those people have a strong relationship with God. Trust is build over time, through godly living, and by the selfless acts of love. To trust someone is to literally put your life in their hands. John Maxwell said it this way, “To be trustworthy, you have to be like a good composition, your words and music must match.” Does your spiritual growth offer the kind of melody that makes others want to sing?