Perpetual Juveniles

Wednesday, Nov. 23                            

“You are only young once, but immaturity can last a lifetime.”  We’ve all met people that fit this description and probably none of my readers would include himself in that category.  But let’s pursue it a bit.  There are three reasons for a person perpetuating immaturity:  mental deficiency, physical deficiency, or attitudinal deficiency.  The first two is not of his own choice, the third one is.  There is something demeaning about choosing to be a life time juvenile.  A person who wants to be taken care of and have every thing handed to him all through life is to be pitied.  He’s abnormal.  He contributes nothing toward his own well being and nothing to society.  He might as well not exist.  In fact, society would be better off without him.  I think a good number of street people fit into this category, too.  Giving up on a normal life is indeed sad.  It’s easier to float downstream than to swim upstream.  Now, let’s apply this to the spiritual life.  A person can be very successful in terms of material things, education, work ethic, financial success, etc. and be a miserable failure in his spiritual life.  There are thousands, if not millions, of people occupying pews who are not beyond the childhood stage in his Christian experience.  Some theologians have gone so far as to say that without fruit—evidence of a changed life–, he is not saved.  The entire New Testament, especially the epistles, hone in on this.  Becoming a mature Christian is a common theme.  Sadly, those in this aberrant  condition are not apt to read those passages, and if they did, the message would probably be ignored.  This is very discouraging, but I’m not writing it for no purpose.  We who are serious about our walk with the Lord are role models, but we need to be aware of the spiritually immature people around us and do something about it.  Start with prayer.  Then take action to meet the needs of these fellow believers.  It will take wisdom, patience, and time.  And we will have to depend on God for doing it His way.  Gal. 6:1:  “Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently.”  I’m not sure that immaturity is a sin, but this admonition is certainly applicable.  We are our brother’s keeper.    

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