Thursday, 9 June 2011

Being Like Babies

In 1 Peter 2 Peter says, we are to be like babies.  Be like newborn babies, always thirsty for the pure spiritual milk.  This is an interesting idea.  Babies are helpless.  They are dependent – they need a lot of looking after.  They need to be fed so that they will grow.  At times they make a lot of noise.  They are constantly developing.  I am sure I could say more if I thought a bit harder – but there are some of the main things we might say about babies.  Peter wants to say some pretty powerful things about the people who are the church.  He wants to stress their potential, and to encourage them to realise it.  But first, and I am sure quite deliberately first, he reminds them of their dependence upon God.  Yes, there is lots they can do for God, lots we are called to do for God.  But, first, Peter’s reminds us of the need for growth.  He reminds them that, just as physical maturity is something which develops, so with spiritual maturity.  Christians should know that they always have room for growth.  We can always learn more.  Peter emphasises the importance of nourishment as a source of spiritual life.  We have traditionally talked about feeding on the Word of God, but probably use that image less these days.  Perhaps we would do well to recapture it?  Peter says that we  should continue to long for that spiritual food which God freely gives so that we may continue to grow spiritually.  We do that receiving Communion.  We do that hearing God’s Word.  We do that when reminded of God’s love and forgiveness. 

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