I would dare say most (if not all) of us want to grow. There is something in us that wants to be better, go farther, and be less constricted in our lives…

Unfortunately, growing isn’t as easy as it appears…and it isn’t painless.

When I was growing up, I hit several growth spurts in a short period of time. My joints just couldn’t keep up with the demands of my longer limbs and underdeveloped ligaments. I remember being on a youth trip once in tears because my knees were swollen and I could hardly walk. It was incredibly painful.

If you had given me the choice to stop growing then and there, I would have and, today, I would still be about 5’2″ instead of 6’2″. Growing, for me, was often painful.

I’ve found that in every area of life, growing can also be painful. We literally have to give up something to grow more.

If you want to grow healthier, you have to give up all the sweets that help you through the day.
If you want to grow in your savings, you have to give up spending on the day to day things that you love but aren’t necessary.
If you want to grow in a relationship, you have to give up “me time” to spend time with them.
If you want to grow spiritually, you have to give up the idea that I get to “just be me” and instead struggle to become what God wants you to become.
If you want to be a better ball player, you have to get off the couch and stop playing video games where you can pretend to be a superstar and take shot after shot at the goal in the driveway. It’s a lot harder to feel like a superstar in the driveway than on the PlayStation.

We all want to grow…to become…to have more…to go farther…but that growing requires resources from somewhere else.
It’s a constant push/pull and too many people want all the benefits of growing without any of the sacrifice that it requires.

What are you growing towards? What are you willing to sacrifice to get there?

24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. 25 Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. 26 So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. 27 But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified. 1 Corinthians 9:24–27 (ESV)

Mark Love
Lead Pastor

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