Christian Living

4 Signs You’re Not Growing as a Christian3 min read

August 5, 2012 2 min read


4 Signs You’re Not Growing as a Christian3 min read

Reading Time: 2 minutes

I once heard someone remark, “I feel stagnant in my faith.” Is this possible? Can a Christian ever be ‘stuck’ in his/her spiritual growth?

No. There is no such thing as a “stagnant” Christian. If you’re not growing stronger, you’re growing weaker. Christians must “press on toward the goal” (Phil 3:14), otherwise they will “drift away from it” (Heb. 2:1). Consider,

 Four (4) Signs That You’re Not Growing:
(Adapted from Hebrews 5:11-14)

1. You don’t find Spiritual matters very exciting (Heb. 5:11). I feel amazement when I consider God’s grace. I get teary-eyed when I think about my Lord’s crucifixion. I feel an adrenaline rush when I visualize Jesus walking out of the tomb. Do you? If you’re not growing, you are emotionally indifferent about this. Instead, going to church is a chore for you. Maybe you don’t feel any urge to talk to your friends about Jesus. Perhaps you only touch your Bible on Sunday and can’t remember the last time you prayed (other than before a meal or before bed).

2. You don’t understand the Bible any better than you did last year (Heb. 5:12). It’s one thing if you became a Christian a week ago. It’s another thing if you’ve been a Christian for a while now. Of course, there will always be a passage that you find “hard to understand” (2 Pet. 3:16). Yet the Bible as a whole can be understood (cf. Psa. 19:7, etc.). If you’re not growing, studying the Bible is intimidating to you. If someone asked you how to get to heaven, would you know where to direct them in God’s Word? Or is it difficult for you to find anything in the Bible?

3. You are unable to teach others about Jesus and His New Testament (Heb. 5:12-13). Do you constantly need motivation and encouragement, otherwise you would never show up for worship? Do you never feel competent enough to explain the Bible to others? Are you reluctant to volunteer for a leadership role at church? Do you use the excuse, “I’ll worry about that when I get older”?

4. You think the line that separates ‘right’ from ‘wrong’ is blurry (Heb. 5:14). All Christians should have strong opinions about moral issues like homosexuality, abortion, euthanasia, and sexual immortality. Deciding who to vote for in the 2012 national election isn’t difficult for God’s faithful. But if we fail to grow spiritually, our ethics become weak. Do you find yourself constantly trying to justify sinful behavior? Are you reluctant to take a stand on moral issues? Are you always willing to ‘push the envelope’ when it comes to your own moral boundaries?

Christians are commanded to “examine themselves” to see whether they are in the faith (2 Cor. 13:5). Why go to such trouble if we didn’t have to worry about becoming weak?

Spiritual growth is a result of a determination to grow.

No one consciously decides to stop growing, just like no one wakes up one day and decides to leave the Lord’s church. It is a slow process of spiritual decay, or “drifting” away from the Lord.

Ben Giselbach is the pulpit minister at the East Side church of Christ in Cleveland, TN. He and his wife Hannah have three children, Ezra, Colleyanna, and Eliza Jane. Ben is a graduate of Freed-Hardeman University and has returned to pursue his MDiv. He has written three books in his You Are A Theologian Series (Thinking Right about the Bible, Thinking Right about God, and Thinking Right about Salvation) and co-authored It's There In Black and White: 37 Questions about Racial Tension in the Church.