As this next year begins and I continue diving into what this whole idea of deeper intimacy looks like, I was struck by something during my reading. Morgan Snyder, with Ransomed Heart, who spearheads Become Good Soil, recently wrote a blog called Anything, Anywhere – The Four Primary Questions of Masculine Initiation. In this post, Morgan writes about Paul, and the initiation he went through, many of those years hidden from our site, to become the Apostle is winds up penning the majority of the New Testament. A very good read, and I encourage you to take the time do so.
One of the four questions that Morgan refers mentions is, “What is my frontier?” This question really struck me as I began to ponder this. I’ve talked about things, in conversation, that were frontier to me, but I don’t know how much I really every processed what it meant to my spiritual life and my walk with God. Morgan quotes Howard Macey is that “the spiritual life cannot be made suburban, it is always frontier. Those who choose to live in it must not only accept it, but even rejoice that it remain untamed.”
I’ve been meditating on this for several days and I believe that God has been showing that this is an area that is very important to remember. Understanding where I am in God’s story, doing introspection on my own spiritual maturity, and then looking at where I still need to grow and mature. It’s a part of how we are initiated as the men and women that God desires to restore us to, but can only happen by our willingness to step into the journey.
Paul writes in Ephesians 4 that our continued growth and maturation will not be done until “we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ” (v. 13). So back to Howard Macey’s quote and what Morgan was getting at, we must continue to step into the new and unknown territories of our faith and in learning the fullness of who God is (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit).
This is a significant area of my journey in really trying to do introspective on what is my frontier. Essentially, what areas of my life and heart have I not yet yielded to God to allow him to continue maturing those parts of me. This is that progressive sanctification. It is lifetime journey of continuing to desire to know more of God and wanting to walk closer to him in such a way that he now becomes a part of your everyday life and is brought into everything that you do.
Am I there?…No, by no means. We all have a long way to go. I stand as a man, just about 3 years since driving the stake in the ground, and wow, something new keeps getting thrown my way that God is using to continue to mature and grow me. I often times, feel like such an infant in this, but it’s a journey where there is no such thing as maybe, which pushes me deeper and deeper into this.
So I want to challenge you to look at your life. Look at your walk with God, if you’ve started to walk with him. If not yet, that’s okay right now, but begin to understand why. If you’re still holding on to life as is, especially a life apart from God that does not allow for continued growth, you have to ask yourself, why? Why do I hold on to a life in the false self that is not yielded? Who have I allowed God to be in my life, if you’ve allowed him in at all? Am I willing to follow him into another unknown?
Now, if you’ve been walking with God and have surrendered to the Lordship of Jesus, whether recently or years ago, what is your frontier? Where in your life have you yet allowed God to mature and grow you into the fullness of Christ? What training and development is still needed in my life to become more spiritually mature? Is it in prayer, your knowledge of God as Father, Son, and/or Holy Spirit? Is it in the way you engage with other believers? Is it in disciplines such as solitude, silence, fasting, celebration, etc? Is it in learning to slowdown from the busyness of life and building greater intimacy with God? Those are just some areas for example.
We have to begin to do introspection in this way. What is your plan for growth? What is your frontier? Starting a new year, this is a great time to begin to assess this in your life. Spend time with God and ask him where your frontier is now. Where does he want you to focus? What words does he have for you in this?
Take these questions to trusted peers and mentors as well. Others that are on the journey with you or have walked the ancient road ahead of you. This question of frontier does not end now. Your frontier now, may not be your frontier next year or 5 years from now. The point is, be willing to continue moving deeper, but always assessing this part of your life and where growth and maturation is still needed.
What’s beautiful about it all, is that God, through different ways will continue to take you down new roads you’ve never thought and you won’t see coming. It’s a beautiful risk and adventure, and believe me, just from what I’ve experienced so far, it is so worth it.