If maturity looks like the Protestant work ethic, or making sensible decisions I am not sure that I want it - at least not all the time. If maturity looks like caring about the bottom line, or making sure that I take care of myself first I am not sure that I want it - certainly not all the time. If maturity looks less like uninhibited freedom, and more like a fundamentalist version of self-control I am not sure that I want it.
One of my heroes of the faith, Harald Bredesen who died a little less than two years ago showed me a way to maturity, which was free from the trappings of getting old without getting graceful. Child-likeness was his greatest attribute, and he had stood before kings, Presidents, and famously rich people with his messages of grace and God's power.
Spiritual maturity may have some portion of the elements listed above, but it certainly does not look like the list of those characteristics which often seem to be the definition of maturity in our culture. I find myself wondering then what attributes I can add to my life to discover maturity, and which ones I can deem non-essential to real spiritual maturity.
One thing I do know: it is not what I think it is, and it is not what others sometimes wish to impose upon me.
What might you add to the list of important ingredients of spiritual maturity?
Here is the list of fellow synchroBloggers on the subject of Spiritual Maturity:
Phil Wyman asks Is Maturity Really What I Want?
Lainie Petersen at Headspace with "Watching Daddy Die"
Kathy Escobar at The Carnival in My Head with "what's inside the bunny?"
John Smulo at JohnSmulo.com
Erin Word at Decompressing Faith with "Long-Wearing Nail Polish and Other Stories"
Beth Patterson at The Virtual Teahouse with "the future is ours to see: crumbling like a mountain"
Bryan Riley at Charis Shalom is Still Complaining
Alan Knox at The Assembling of the Church with "Maturity and Education"
KW Leslie at The Evening of Kent
Bethany Stedman at Coffee Klatch with Moving Towards True Being: The Long Process of Maturity
Adam Gonnerman at Igneous Quill with "Old Enough to Follow Christ?"
Joe Miller at More Than Cake with "Intentional Relationships for Maturity"
Jonathan Brink at JonathanBrink.com with "I Won't Sin"
Susan Barnes at A Booklook with "Growing Up"
Tracy Simmons at The Best Parts with "Knowing Him Who is From the Beginning"
Joseph Speranzella at A Tic in the Mind's Eye with "Spiritual Maturity And The Examination of Conscience"
Sally Coleman at Eternal Echoes
Liz Dyer at Grace Rules with "What I Wish The Church Knew About Spiritual Maturity"
Cobus van Wyngaard at My Contemplations with "post-enlightenment Christians in an unenlightened South Africa"
Steve Hayes at Khanya with "Adult Content"
Ryan Peter at Ryan Peter Blogs and Stuff with "The Foundation For Ministry and Leading"
Sound and Silence considers Inclusion and Maturity
Lew A at The Pursuit talks about Maturity and Preaching
Kai Schraml tells us about Mature Virtue