October 15, 2015

Your Faith Box: Planting in good soil

For your faith to grow and mature and produce a good crop, it must be planted in good soil, soil that provides room to grow, proper nutrients, protection for the weather and resistance to the weeds and thorns seeking to hinder growth and maturity. The new Christian has already provided the soil ready to receive the word. You have accepted Christ as your savior and Lord. Hopefully you have been baptized and have received the Holy Spirit. What more can you do? The first thing you can do is read the Word of God regularly. Find out what the scriptures say about the life you want to build with God.

Luke's gospel 4:1-13 records the story of Jesus temptations by Satan in the wilderness after John had baptized Him. Notice in the story as Satan tempts Jesus, His every response begins with, "It is written,..." Or "It is said.." Jesus knew the wisdom of the prophets and ancient men and women of God; the scriptures. He used the scriptures to rebuke Satan because He knew the scriptures. A new Christian would be wise to know what the scriptures say about God and this new life you want to live.

The second thing you can do to provide good soil for the seeds that have been planted in you is to find a group of believers and join them. Understand, I am not suggesting you join a cult. I am not suggesting you join a particular church. I am suggesting you join with other Christians who are seeking to  live a life pleasing to God. Read Like's account of the Acts of the Apostles. This remarkable chapter of the New Testament is the story of the spread of Christianity from Jerusalem to Judah and to the rest of the known world. That spreading of the good news centered around building groups of people studying and encouraging each other. We grow best when we grow together. If you think groups are not important read the history of early Christians and the abuse they endured, even death, just because they were known to belong to Christian groups. They derived their strength and determination from those around them in groups of those who refused to give up their faith.

There is strength in knowing someone else is struggling with the same life problem as yourself and finding solutions. Likewise, strength and maturity in the faith can come from those who have meet the same life problems, had the same questions, and found the answers from their relationship with the Living Jesus. You will notice I did not say to find a good inspirational preacher, although it is a plus if you find one in a Godly group. In my experience, I learn and growth best when I have to work at studying rather than just paying attention in class; even if the class is taught by an inspired teacher.

These are the first two things you can do to insure the Word of God planted in you will have a chance to grow and mature and bear good fruit. The next post will talk about something you can do to build a solid foundation on which to build and develop a living, the breathing, strong faith as you walk with God.

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