6. The Wrong Thing to Say

I got to 12 Baskets early, walked in, and looked for Stan.  I didn’t see him, but took an empty table near the door and waited, somewhat afraid he wouldn’t be there.  At exactly 8:30 he walked in and joined me at the table. 

“How are you doing?” He asked with a bright smile and then added, “What have you been doing since we were last together?”

Before I could answer, he held up his hand and said, “Let’s order breakfast; I’m starved.”

With that, he motioned to the waiter.  When he arrived, Stan said to him, “I’ll have my usual.” I glanced at the menu and made a quick decision.

Stan said, “Sorry for the interruption.  Where were we?”

“I was getting ready to tell you what I have been doing since I last saw you.”

“Right,” he said. Go ahead.”

“I have really been anticipating our time together,” I began.  I have spent a lot of time praying, and I have made a list of things I would like to talk with you about.”

“Great!” was his response.

“And I feel really fortunate to be able to spend time with a mature Christian.”

Stan held up his hand and said, “Stop right there.” 

Somewhat taken aback, I said “Did I do or say something wrong?”

“No, not really wrong, but I think your perspective is a bit off.”

“How so?” I asked.

“I think it is wrong to described anyone as a ‘mature Christian.’ I prefer the term, ‘maturing Christian’ because ‘mature’ connotes that there is no further to go in the process of maturing.”

Stan went on to say, “I am convinced that maturing as a Christian is a life-long process that is not intended by God to stop until we have taken our last breath on this side of eternity.”

“As part of the same thinking process, I believe that if I ever get to the point of thinking I am spiritually mature, I will be on the wrong path and heading backwards.  There will always be more to learn about God, and there will always be more steps in growing in that direction.”

I started to apologize for what I said, but he interrupted me and said, “There is nothing to apologize about; many people describe themselves or others as being ‘“mature Christians.’”

“It may just be my personal quirk, but I am convinced I am right and I want you and I to be on the same page from the beginning.”

“I understand what you are saying, Stan,  and I appreciate your perspective as a maturing  Christian,” I said with emphasis.

He smiled and said, “I think you are going to be a good student!”

By then the waiter had returned with our breakfast.  “Would you like to thank the Lord for this wonderful meal?” Stan asked.

Since I was not used to praying in public, I was a little hesitant, but said a quick silent prayer, “Please lead me Lord.”  And He did as I prayed over our food and time together.

We both started to eat and I asked Stan, “Can I ask you a question?”

“I would prefer finishing my breakfast before I get to talking in earnest.  Once I start talking, I tend to keep going.  I’m afraid my breakfast would get cold, and I do not like to eat cold food or waste good money!”

“Let’s eat and then get down to business,” he said.  And so we did.

_______________________


I say to every person among you not to think more highly of yourself than you ought to think.  Romans 12:3

Prayer:  Lord, thank you for all you do to open me to what you want me to hear and to know.  I want to spend the rest of my days maturing in my understanding of you and of what you have for me to be and to do.  Please, Lord, help me in never stopping to grow in my relationship with you.  Amen.

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