Tuesday, August 3, 2021

When Growth is Slow

 By: Rebekah Hargraves

Photo Courtesy Of: Ravi Roshan

"Don’t be deceived: God is not mocked. For whatever a person sows he will also reap, because the one who sows to his flesh will reap destruction from the flesh, but the one who sows to the Spirit will reap eternal life from the Spirit. Let us not get tired of doing good, for we will reap at the proper time if we don’t give up." ~Galatians 6:6-9

I’ll never forget my utter amazement several months ago when I learned a new little tidbit of fascinating information about bamboo.

You see, when a bamboo seed is planted, what grows first are the roots, and they grow for *5 WHOLE YEARS* before a stem will ever begin to shoot up and pop its way through the dirt. That’s right - you will have to wait for 5 years after planting a bamboo seed to ever see the beginning fruit of your labors!

But guess what?

Because it has spent all that time focusing on its root system, its foundation, bamboo plants become so strong that many of them live for 100 years or more - much longer than fellow plants who shoot up through the ground almost immediately!

Think about this concept now in terms of parenting and other areas of your own life.

It feels like it takes forever for a lesson to actually take root in your child, right? It often feels like you’re only ever repeating yourself - especially in the early years - again and again and again. But the slower the growth, the stronger the foundation. No, it’s no fun to have to repeat yourself all day every day. But repetition is one of the best ways for kids to grow and learn a new concept - so that repetition is actually serving them well! That slow and steady growth will actually take root and last!

It feels like it takes forever to grow in your theological knowledge and Bible literacy when you're busy comparing yourself to believers who are years on down the road from where you are. But it helps to remember that they, too, started where you started - with a smaller amount of knowledge that grew bit by bit day by day. If you want to grow in your Bible knowledge, don't view it as a race as if you're back in school cramming for a test. We all know that was neither sustainable nor truly educational - how much we have probably forgotten from our school days! If, instead, we grow slowly in our Bible knowledge, adding small bit to small bit, that knowledge will actually sink down deep into our hearts and minds, and we'll truly remember it!

The same could be said for countless other areas of our lives, as well, from work and finances to social media platforms and ministry. If we want true growth that will last, it must be pursued slowly but surely.

So, the next time you find yourself repeating the same admonition for the five millionth time, take heart, Mama. The next time you lament how little you know about the Bible, take heart, friend. The next time you feel as if your business or ministry is growing at a snail's pace, take heart, sister. It may take 5 years (or more!) for these things to become well established, but the fruit will last a lifetime! 

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