When I was fairly young, we had a lava lamp in our living room. It was a really funky-looking lava lamp with a pale green light and white lava in it. Remember, this was the early 1970’s and a lava lamp went well with our early 70’s decor. Anyway, I was convinced that the lava in the lamp was actually Casper the Friendly Ghost [before you say it, yes, I realize I was a very strange kid].
I loved Casper-in-the-bottle. He was always there and I loved to turn the lamp on and watch him fly around. I also loved to talk to him. I think at first my parents probably thought it was really strange. But after a while, I think they just found it amusing. My love affair with Casper lasted only a little while but eventually, sadly, I grew up and moved on from my friend Casper.
It’s really funny to me how we just love certain things as kids and then as we grow we outgrow them and leave them behind.
When I was twelve, I decided that I was madly in love with, and going to marry, Shawn Cassidy. The minute I laid eyes on him I was totally smitten as only a 12-year old can be with someone complete unrealistic and unattainable. I loved all of his gumball pop music. I knew every song by heart and pretended he was singing them to me. I watched the Hardy Boys Mysteries show religiously the whole time it ran from January 1977 – January 1979. I remember that I cried when it went off the air.
One time there was a massive fire in the canyons above where we lived in California. Everyone in the neighborhood was walking up the road to get closer and see the wildfire. I remember being so upset with my dad because he wouldn’t let me walk back down the hill to our house and the Hardy Boys was about to come on. Oh, for that to be my only worry now!
Well, twelve came and went and all of a sudden I was giving away my Shawn Cassidy t-shirt and was definitely too cool to listen to his music anymore. However, the boy-bug had definitely hit so it was off to cooler guys to adore.
It’s funny to me that we are so fickle. I mean, I realize it is really good to move on to more mature things but sometimes my interests come and go quicker than the wind.
The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 13:11, “When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.”
We are to grow up and give up our childish ideas and things. I admit that when I thought back about Casper, the Lava Lamp Ghost and my Shawn Cassidy crush, I giggled. But I also thought about how silly and childish both of those ideas were.
So it is with Christianity. There is something so very sweet about a brand-new “baby” Christian. They are excited, exuberant, and want to tell everybody about what they are learning. And we can definitely learn a lot about our first love and retaining that exuberance and excitement. But baby Christians only know a little bit about God’s character. They only know a little bit about a lot of Biblical things. And that’s fine because they are babies. What isn’t fine is when you see a person who has been a Christian for years and years and they still only know a little bit about a lot of Biblical things.
The Bible tells us we are to “…grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 3:18 We are not to stay the same as the day we were saved we are to learn more about our Lord. We are to strive and struggle and study and in doing so, we know more and more about the character of God. We grow in faith and become mature Christians.
As we start out we “as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby.” (1 Peter 2:2) But see the what the Bible has to say about the danger of staying with only milk. Hebrews 5:12-14, “For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe. But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.”
So those who are of full age or Mature Christians, should be eating the meat of God’s Word not just the milk. They should be studying God’s Word, digging into it, meditating on it, discussion it with their friends, listening to preachers who rightly discern the Word of God. And like a person who is eating meat, you should be growing strong and healthy.
Open up that Bible. Start reading and knowing God more. Just like exercise, the more you do it, the stronger you will become!
And don’t worry, I still think of my friend Casper everytime I see a lava lamp and it makes me smile!