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January 9, 2023

Planted: The Growing


Growing Pains

Today we continued in the Planted series with the second message, The Growing. Based out of Acts 2, Pastor Eli Nelson introduced the 4 G’s of what it means to be planted: the Gathering, the Growing, the Giving, and the Gifting. (If you missed last week, read the blog and listen to the podcast on The Gathering for a powerful message on the importance of being planted in the House of God.)

“planted in the house of the Lord, they will flourish in the courts of our God. They will still bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green,” Psalm 92:13-14 (NIV)

As believers, we are called to grow in the things of God.

And as many of us know, this type of growth is not passive; it’s a choice. And just like the growing pains of becoming taller as children, there can be pains that come along with growth. To live the fruitful life God has called us to, we must commit to growing together. And we must get comfortable with not always being comfortable.

So why as believers are we to set our eyes on growing? As we read in 2 Peter 1, without growth we become ineffective and unproductive. And to resist growth is to be nearsighted and blind.

“For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But whoever does not have them is nearsighted and blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their past sins.” 2 Peter 1:5-9 (NIV)

What are you giving God to use?

It can seem a little harsh and know, it’s not be taken in some legalistic way—but the reality is that if we are setting our eyes on Christ and what he has for us, we can be confident that the growth happening now is planting seeds and digging deeper roots for however God chooses to harvest later on. As believers, we are confident that God will use it for His glory. So instead of being nearsighted, we have faith in the long-term. Do we plant seeds in our garden in the morning, and run out in the evening expecting a sprout? No. It takes time. There’s a process, a waiting. And this waiting is active. We water. We pull weeds. We have faith that there’s more going on than what we see with our physical eye.

Even if you’re just beginning your walk with Jesus, He can use the Holy Spirit inside you to witness through your testimony. Share the story of what God has done in your life and see God move.

“They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.” Revelation 12:11 (NIV)

How do we establish “roots” in the House of God?

Roots are established through relationships. We read in Acts 2 that “everyday they continued to meet together." Not whenever they felt like it, but everyday they continued to meet together.

“Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts,” Acts 2:46 (NIV)

Relationships take time to develop. Relationships take effort. You have to show up over and over. It might stretch you at times and get you out of your comfort zone, but as noted above, we can’t choose both growth and comfort. Growth starts with a choice and is backed up with persistence. Growing and getting older is inevitable, but growing in maturity is optional.

As Pastor Eli shared, just as wind causes a tree to grow deeper roots, so does the “wind” in our lives. Roots keep you stable and planted; they keep us from blowing over. Roots help you grow fruit. Roots are established through relationships.

“Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.” Ephesians 4:14-16 (NIV)

We grow because we are connected to Christ, as the head, and because we are connected to one another. Our growth is dependent on Christ and our fellowship with other believers.

“You go as I go. I go as you go.”

Check out the podcast below!

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