Cigarettes are said to stunt a child’s growth. One of the physiological reasons for that is that nicotine suppresses one’s appetite; therefore, a child who smokes will not be hungry, not eat as much as he should, and not receive important nourishment to grow.

That is physical growth. Spiritually speaking, we are “born again” and as newborn, spiritual infants, we must also grow by feasting on the Word of God, prayer, worship, and intimate fellowship with other believers who “speak the truth in love” (Eph. 4:15) to us that we might spiritually grow into the likeness of Christ. So let me ask you a spiritual question: just as nicotine suppresses the appetite in a physical body, what suppresses your spiritual appetite from hungering for God, worship, fellowship, prayer, and His Word?

For me, there are many distractions that take my focus off of God (too many to list here). Thankfully, I have people in my life who speak the truth in love to me to help me get my focus back on Christ.

In reality, that is one of the priorities in our ministry: pointing people back to Christ and His great love for them. We talk about sin a lot only because God’s love is greater than all of our sins! Every single one of them has been paid for in full so that we are no longer enemies with God but His adopted children! Let me encourage you to re-focus on Christ this summer and spend time in His Word and prayer daily!

-Mark (growing by grace)