Encouraging spiritual growth takes two fronts. Every believer needs to have words of adulation spoken to them. We need people to come along side us and tell us we are doing a good job, or to tell us we can walk like Christ. These words are essential to keep us motivated and traveling the path of Christ-likeness. But we also all need those sharp prods and hard words that call us out of our laziness and into obedience in the faith.
Every believer is called to know and understand the basic doctrines of the faith: repentance, baptism, Christ’s salvation, spiritual authority and the resurrection and judgment of all people. But more than that, we are all called to allow these doctrines to permeate our person and affect our lives. Mere head knowledge is spiritual milk, but applying this knowledge to everyday situations and allowing it to affect the moral and ethical choices we make: this is meat. This is where the rubber hits the road.
The author of Hebrews enjoins us to not just drink, but to chew on the doctrines of the faith and apply them to our life and that is going to mean there will be tough words that need to be spoken one to another as we step out and grow ourselves and help others to grow.
Where is God calling you to chew and swallow the biblical teachings about faith in Christ?