Watching the amazing day to day changes as my children have grown is something I really enjoy reflecting on. We often look at photos from months or even years ago and reminisce about how much they have changed in such a short time. When they are smaller the changes seem that much more apparent. Milestones like walking and first words stick out, but it is the day to day growth that is really amazing. The look of recognition in their eyes; the first time they express empathy for another. It amazes me on every level. But what is even more amazing is that as adults we are still constantly growing in one form or another, we just don't always recognize it.
Our relationships change throughout our lives. We grow closer to some people while we grow more distant from others. We may develop lifelong friends or perhaps make deeper friendships in adulthood. The one thing that any type of lasting relationship has in common is growth. Growth in any relationship takes time and work. Very few friendships simply happen, and most relationships that are not growing simply skim across the surface of possibility. Our relationship with God is much the same. The more time we spend in his word, seeking him in prayer and contemplation, the more we grow in our relationship with him.
Peter challenges us to grow in our relationship with Christ in 1 Peter 2. He entreats us to put away the attributes that may have once defined our lives.
"So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy
and envy and all slander. Like newborn infants,
long for the pure spiritual milk,
that by it you may grow up into salvation-..." 1 Peter 2:1-2
It is with our longing for the things of God that we grow in our relationship with him. We put off what we once were in order to grow. It is easy to make the mistake in thinking that we are ever fully grown in our relationship with God. He is forever shaping us to more clearly mirror who he is. Just like looking at pictures of our growing children, we can look back at the growth God has provided in our lives, and this reflection will always strengthen our faith.