John 1:12-13 (NIV)
12Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—13children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.
Dear Daily Devos,
I just got back from church camp and it changed my life forever! I’ve been going to church and youth group all the time and volunteering in my church. I have also been doing Devos as much as possible and going to God for everything. I just don’t see myself changing and I feel like I’m still not doing enough for Him. I’ve prayed about it and I honestly don’t know what to do. -SF
Have you ever been to a T-ball baseball game? There is a stand that holds the ball and all the little kids have to do is swing at the it. Sometimes, they miss even though it’s sitting right there. Sometimes, when they do hit it, they run to 3rd base instead of to 1st. And in the outfield, every kid runs toward the ball and there ends up being a pile of kids on top of the ball. It’s more of a comedy routine than an actual sport. But by the time the players turn 12, they are awesome. They are hitting home runs. They are making double plays. It’s crazy that only 6 or 7 years ago, they were bumbling T-ball players.
Having a relationship with God is kinda like that. It’s a journey. It’s a process of growing up. And it doesn’t happen overnight. A pitcher doesn’t just go to a couple practices and become an amazing pitcher, you know. He practices. He works out with other players. He gets coaching. And over time, he and others notice the differences within him.
I think church camp was probably amazing! It sounds like it opened your mind and your heart to a new desire for God. And that’s awesome. Now, it’s time to practice. It’s time to be together with other Christians. It’s time to get coaching from your youth leaders or your pastors. Look back 6 months from now, and say, “Wow…before, that would have had me frazzled, but today, my faith sustained me.” You will keep growing and you will come to recognize the subtle differences.
One more thing that I want to mention: You asked if you were doing enough for God. To me, that sounds like a checklist of chores that need to be done for God to be happy with you…and I don’t think it’s like that. I think a relationship with God is about coming to recognize all the amazing things God does for you, because of God’s grace and because of God’s love for you. Don’t stop going to youth group, because that’s where you will find people who can encourage you as you grow in your faith. Don’t stop volunteering, because you will experience Jesus in the people you serve. Don’t stop reading devotions, because they will continue to challenge your heart so that you will fall more in love with God. But in the meanwhile, look at the things God is doing. Look at all the blessings God brings. The more you look, the more you will recognize God’s work. And the more you recognize God’s work, the higher your expectations for God will be. And the higher your expectations for God, the deeper your faith in God will become. It’s all a growing process. -Neal
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