Curious to see if anyone has some thoughts on this.
I was thinking through a comment I read the other day about where the writer compared themselves to another person with regards to their faith. They didn’t feel like they were keeping up. In my mind everyone needs three different people in their lives. 1) Someone who is more mature in their faith, 2) someone who is at the same point in their faith, and 3) someone who is not as far along in their faith.
In other words, if all I have in my life are #1s (say a Pastor) and #3s (in my case my daughters), I will constantly struggle. The mature person almost always is further along than I am in my faith, and I will fill like I am failing in some way. Sure they will be able to help me and mentor me. That is part of their role in my life. But if that is the only person I interact with in terms of growing in my faith, I start questions. I will ask, “Why can’t I be where they are?” “Why can’t I be right there in terms of my faith walk?” In my mind it is not a fair comparison. Everyone progresses at a different pace. For example, the world didn’t just go from being non-Christian to Christian overnight.
In fact, take a look at this website. This site shows that even after we become Christians, there are a lot more steps to go. It doesn’t end at that point of accepting Chirst. You continue on. http://www.angelfire.com/bc/normanhousechurch/EngleScale.htm
I think about it like this – if I am playing a sport – there are going to be a lot of people who are better than me, a lot that are about the same as me, and a lot that are a little worse than me. I have my coaches and star players (the #1s), other team members at my level (the #2s), and then some who are not as good as me – the JV player (the #3s).
• My coaches and star players are there to push me and challenge me. They teach me and offer advice. They are there to mentor me. They are better than me, but they are someone I look up to and aspire to learn more from.
• My fellow players are the ones that I can talk openly with. I can do this without feeling like I am messing up all the time. I can say, “Hey! How did you do that?” “Did you get that?” “What did he just say?” “I just don’t get it.” And by talking opening with these fellow players you help each other out. You walk through the problem together. You start to realize that others are feeling the same way, or they are struggling just like you. Sure we turn to our coaches for help, but there are times we turn to this group as well. We mentor each other.
• With regard to those that are not as good as you – the JV player. You are basically their #1 – their coach or star player. You are now the one that they are looking up to and seeking advice from. You are the one that they are trying to learn from. You are the varsity player and they are the JV player. You are basically mentoring them. You might be only one of many, but you are still one of the #1s. On top of that, they challenge you and cause you to grow. In my life, I learn by teaching. So, when a #3 needs help, I am learning at the same time.
Personally, at all three levels I have individuals who fill that role. In many cases I have several people in each of those categories. But, I will also say that in general I can point to a very small group of individuals who I can count on the most. If I were to leave out any particular group, I think that I would be floundering. Then you throw in the frustration factor and life takes some very wild swings.
So…in conclusion. Sorry about the book. Just me rambling. That is the story of my life – the rambler. You can call me the ramble master… 😀