There are seasons in the life of a Christian; not that it makes one Christian better than another, just seasons of maturity. John the Apostle wrote in 1 John 2:12-14: “I write to you dear children because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name. I write to you dear fathers because you have known him who he is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I write to you, dear children, because you have known the Father. I write to you, fathers because you have known him who is from the beginning. I write to you young men because you are strong, the word of God lives in you and you have overcome the evil one.”
Similarly i wrote the song, “I Speak to You” because it is said or sung to the audience when i perform it but with much the same words as the Biblical text. The Spirit speaks through John to children, that is to new believers who learn with certainty that their sins are forgiven. This can take some time to actually believe and many Christians today seem to be stuck here. Either they are struggling to believe they are forgiven and therefore have a difficult time forgiving others, or they accept on some level they are forgiven of their sins but don’t seem to go on to maturity. It is a vital and wonderful season and ought to be cherished by those experiencing it and those who need to be reminded again of that basic but most important reality.
Then the disciple of Jesus goes on to overcome the evil one. That is they have victory over sin, they are not taken in by the devil’s schemes. They begin to realize that this is possible on this side of heaven, though not unto perfection, certainly from victory unto victory and they have a tendency to remind the rest of the Church of the importance of this. The danger is to start to judge others and begin to have an elitist attitude, where the believer thinks he or she is a cut above the rest. But if cherished well, this season can be a great blessing to the Church, can usher in revival and even help thousands of others resist temptation and come into a kind of promised land of new life in Christ.
And then there are fathers and there are precious few of those. I dare say little about it, because i’m not sure where i’m at on this and may be barely learning about it myself. But it seems that fathers in the faith, whether male or female (of course these maturity levels have to do with spiritual maturity not gender or age so much), begin to relearn the basics of the faith through a much deeper appreciation and experience. They can chuckle a bit more when other believers are not getting it, they can be patient, they can love without condition, they are not easily thwarted. And they bear fruit which lasts.
Let us appreciate whatever season we find ourselves in and give God all the glory.