Ate a delicious Noodle-y lunch with one of my best friends today, and a variation of this question came up. The context was: some people don't want to grow, don't want to see what their potential has in store. They're stagnant. Satisfied, perhaps, yes, but unmoving. We were specifically discussing this in terms of faith, but it can applied in almost any area of life.
At another lunch, a few weeks ago, with one of my pastor friends, I raised a similar question: what, if anything, is holding us back from taking that "next step" (whatever it may be) with God? I told him that was our homework for the next time we dined together.
And as is pretty typical, I've been avoiding my homework.
After it came up today, though, I've been thinking. What is holding me back? Am I being held back?
Aversion to anything "Bible" is definitely one area in my life. Everyone who's ever had a theological conversation with me knows how much I despise "religion" and "the Church", because I've seen the Bible used as a weapon too many times. But a couple nights ago, I actually picked one up and read something 'for fun' (well, I didn't actually pick one up, I picked up my phone, because there's an app for that). And the verses I read were inspiring. (1 Corinthians 12)
A single session of reading does not a Bible-lover Jeremy make. But it's a start.
Another area for growth is related to that passage: applying my spiritual gifts. It's easy to "talk God" in certain contexts, like Sunday mornings, or church small groups. It's more difficult to remember to use that gift outside of those situations. Like at work. Or spending time with family. It's not that this is "holding me back", per se, I'm just identifying it as an area for improvement.
Aside from those, well, maybe 'trust' is another holder-backer, but even that I'm growing, making progress. So I guess really what I've learned is that the next step for me is open that darn book. Shoot. Fine Holy Spirit, you win this round. But I don't have to be happy about it!
What's holding you back?