When someone asks us how we are doing, we often respond by telling them what we are doing. We assume that if we are involved in the right activities (and enough of them) that we must be making progress.
But are we actually growing or are we simply keeping busy?
Consider the following analogy I learned from a sermon:
One of the early explorers to the North Pole charted his journey hourly to ensure he stayed on course through the white wasteland. At one point a strange phenomenon began to occur. As he checked his position, his instruments indicated that even though he had been moving northward, he was actually farther south than he had been an hour before. Regardless of the speed at which he walked in the direction of the Pole, he continued to get farther away from it. Finally he discovered that he had ventured onto an enormous iceberg that was drifting in one direction as he was walking in the other!
So are you growing? Compare yourself to who you were one year ago to who you are today:
- Are you more loving?
- Are you more concerned with the needs of others?
- Are you more aware of your mistakes, flaws and shortcomings?
- Are you more willing to forgive others?
- Are you more willing to forgive yourself?
Seek those things in life that will empower you to answer “Yes” to these questions every year. Ultimately, if you do not have the passion to move into new areas, to stretch yourself with challenging possibilities, to help you discover your hidden potential – your ability to help others greatly diminishes. And if you’re unwilling or unable to help others in a greater capacity each year, then I would argue that you’re not growing.