Today’s Scripture Reading: Acts 18:24-19:20, 1 Corinthians 1:1-3:23
If you’ve taken a child to the pediatrician in the last 30 years, you’re probably familiar with growth charts. These growth charts plot the height and weight of infants and children and then compare those numbers to national averages.
It is very scary when a new mom and dad hear the doctor say “Your child has FTT.” Failure to Thrive (FTT) refers to a child whose physical growth is significantly less than that of his/her peers.
What does FTT look like in the life of a Christian?
Dear brothers and sisters when I was with you I couldn’t talk to you as I would to spiritual people I had to talk as though you belonged to this world or as though you were infants in the Christian life. I had to feed you with milk, not with solid food, because you weren’t ready for anything stronger. And you still aren’t ready, for you are still controlled by your sinful nature. You are jealous of one another and quarrel with each other. Doesn’t that prove you are controlled by your sinful nature? Aren’t you living like people of the world? —1 Corinthians 3:1-3
When Paul was assessing the Corinthian’s spiritual state he measured their ability to resist being controlled by their sinful nature. He referred to the weak as those who had to be fed milk and the healthy and growing as those on a diet of solid food.
How can we know the amount of control our sinful nature has on our lives?
Paul thought it was pretty simple:
How do you get along with other people?
Jealousy and quarreling with others is a sure sign of our sinful nature. It is so bad that Paul said “it’s living like people of the world.” In other words, our lives don’t reflect Christ at all!
It was such a problem with the Corinthians that Paul had to completely change the way he interacted with them. They were like selfish babies. So he had to talk to them like babies.
It is understandable for new Christians to need “milk.” Paul wasn’t talking to them; it was the folks who had known Christ for years he was frustrated with.
What do we do when our “sinful nature” shows its ugly head?
- Recognize our mistake, accept responsibility
- Repent and ask for forgiveness and then do a 180° change
- Re-commit to follow close to Christ and ask the Holy Spirit to help our “Christ nature” to grow and our sinful nature to “fail to thrive!”
Heavenly Father, we want to thrive and grow in our relationship with You. Every day we want to become “more like You.” Holy Spirit point out the areas in our lives that our sinful nature is controlling; show us how to grow past these areas of weakness. Use us for Your Glory and Your Honor!
In Jesus’ Name. Amen and Amen!
© 2013 Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 1 Corinthians 4:1-7:40