As we look at the issue of our identity in Christ and explore what it means to come into maturity, let’s begin with the posture of coming to Him as He admonished all of us to come: as little children.
In this teaching, we explore the three stages of maturity: being a child, a son or daughter, and ultimately stepping into the role of father/mother. Scripture reminds us of this process in 1Corinthians 4:14-16:
I do not write these things to shame you, but as my beloved children I warn you. For though you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ,
yet you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel. Therefore I urge you, imitate me.
Let’s begin with the concept that we are given an inheritance. In order to obtain it, we need to move through some stages in our maturing process to appropriate what is already ours:
- Move out of performance
- Move into the law of love
- Move beyond our potential to squander
- Move toward stewarding our inheritance
- Move toward making our gifts grow
We are going to look at some of the stages we must walk through in order to live in the list above. We will discuss going from children to heirs. From heirs to lovers and ultimately moving from lovers into being released to be mothers and fathers of the faith.
We are given an inheritance. In order to obtain it, we need to move through some stages in our maturing process to appropriate what is already ours.
You might ask why this topic is so important to the believer. I’ll answer with my own story. I am an only child. I grew up hyper responsible and in a home that centered on my performance. I was raised in a tradition of Christianity where I was taught to perform out of guilt. Being a child of a functional alcoholic father and a preacher’s kid mother, I learned how to keep the peace and perform for love and acceptance. When you grow up becoming a co-dependent person you take a lot of that dysfunction into your relationship with our triune God.
Learning true identity is a process.
Excerpted from Fundamentals of Healing Prayer by Jill Ricci. Coming September 2016 from CVHR Books.
© 2016 Jill A. Ricci. All rights reserved.