I have read 1 Corinthians 13 many times, but today something caught my attention I had not really absorbed before. ” When I was a child I used to talk like a child, think as a child, reason as a child, when I became a man, I put aside childish things” 1 Corinthians 13:11 As I pondered these words I asked myself what it truly meant to put aside childish things. I am an adult, my behaviors are clearly adult in nature but I know that there are childhood traumas that have kept me bound to some of my child-like behaviors and today I want freedom from that. I am ready to put aside my childhood and become a true woman in Christ. In order to do so, it is important to know what I am putting aside. Today I am digging deeper and I thought I might bring you along!
- What does it mean to talk like a child? Children are argumentative. They know everything before you tell them. They talk back. They look to blame others and when their shortcomings are pointed out they point right back at you. They call others names. They speak with hatred and anger because they have not fully formed the ability to communicate lovingly. They scream and throw tantrums.
- What does it mean to think like a child? Children are vague in their thinking. Narrowing their focus is almost impossible. They are unclear, unorganized and they think everyone around them is just like them. They are egocentric and interpret things based on only their needs.
- How does a child reason? They are illogical. They have difficulty separating reality from fiction. They lack empathy and often have no filter. They believe everyone’s needs match their own and lack the ability to reason the needs of others.
Oh boy. I can see myself in a few of these. Im just going to be transparent in an effort to encourage you to do the same. I can be argumentative. I will talk back, especially if I feel threatened. Anger does fuel my words when I am pinned down. I have been known to scream and have thrown adult tantrums because I felt unheard and misunderstood. My reasons are the same reasons a child communicates as I have. I am happy to say I no longer think like a child or reason like a child, but I sure as hell communicate like one often and that is where I need growth in Christ.
You see, to look inward and discern where we need growth is the key to putting aside childish things. Searching our own hearts and seeing the truth about ourselves takes away the hold the devil has on us that is hindering our growth. Yes, it can be painful and often embarrassing to see where we are needing to grow. It is, however, the only way for us to truly find healing and grow in Christ.
The whole point of the discernment I felt today from this verse is that I cannot love fully if I do not put aside the childish things. I cannot offer my best love if I am still communicating like a child. I cannot see the fullness of the love in front of me if I am still thinking like a child and I will completely miss the boat that leads to love if I am reasoning as a child. Marriages fall because of childish behaviors and thought processes. Friendships die. Families fall apart. Careers cease. Our entire life as adult is affected when we choose to continue living in our childish ways.
Today I encourage you to choose love and in doing so put aside your childish ways. Look deep into yourself and be honest. Ask God to show you the places in which you still act childish. Ask for healing. Then, move forward. Grow. Thrive. Live life fully in the love that Christ offers. It is waiting there for you and before you discredit love, remember this:
Without love you are nothing. ( 1 Cor 13 : 1- 3) with love you have everything because the greatest is love. (1 Cor 13: 13) We need love because God is love. Love is everything my friends, and it is attainable once we get honest with ourselves and put aside our childish ways.