9 ” Whom will he teach knowledge? And whom will he make to understand the message? Those just weaned from milk? Those just drawn from the breasts?
10 For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept, Line upon line, line upon line, Here a little, there a little.”
“How do I grow?” a man recently asked. “Sure and steady,” is the correct answer. When it comes to faith, we must get out of the microwave mentality. We want it quick, easy, and effort free. But is this realistic? I like to compare the Christian’s life to trees. Have you noticed which trees fall first? And which seem to withstand the strong winds? In the south we have the tall Georgia pines. In a few short years they grow forty feet or more. They are tall, skinny, and fragile. When we have ice, the Georgia pines snap like toothpicks. But the oak stands firm. A Georgia pine only lives for a decade or so, but the oak lives for hundreds of years.
What is the difference between these trees? One grows fast and carefree, but the other grows slow, steady, and has strong wood. Have you ever tried to pull a nail out of an oak board? I have. It’s no easy task.
In the Christian life, there are people who seem to soar like a rocket, yet in a short time their weak faith burns out. Some recover, but they do so by following the same process of growth we all must go through. Precept upon precept, little by little. In the second epistle of Peter, we see the same thing being taught. Add to your faith virtue. Add to your virtue knowledge. Add to your knowledge self-control. On and on it goes. Line upon line, precept upon precept.
As believers, we know the race is not to the swift, but to those who have endurance. It’s okay if we are young in the faith or lacking the deep knowledge others seem to have. Our focus is on today. We don’t compare ourselves to others, but to the word God is revealing today. My only concern is to add what I am learning to what I already have. And to never be satisfied with the status quo.
A tree begins to die when it stops growing. Though it may hang on for many years, it is a slow decline. If we are not growing, we are also in a steady decline. And fortunate for us, there is never a point in life where we have to stop growing. Open the word and add what you are learning today to your life. This day’s lesson is tomorrows foundation. Rest in the truth that each precept is for you at this moment. We can’t build a strong life on a weak foundation, but instead build a solid foundation through the growth of each day. Then you’ll look back periodically and see the slow but steady growth of your life, which is founded upon the sure foundation of Christ.