God is a God of process. An oak tree starts with an acorn. Our Bible took more than a thousand years to write and collect. Full-grown, healthy, responsible, mature adults start as a baby. God planned for the process and growth of all things; they are woven into the fabric of all of his creation. As a 72 year old man I can look back and see the history of my own life, the events, the processes that shaped me into who I am today, good and bad. I can also look back on the lives of our own kids having seen them from the time they were an hour old baby to an adult, and I have seen and been part of the forces, the processes, and the principles that shaped them into who they are today. Those things that are most important to God seem to take the longest to process, and sometimes when something interrupts the process, the result is ugly. A corn plant gets interrupted with a drought, a chicken gets totally interrupted by a hawk, a person gets interrupted with an accident, cancer or COVID.
But with people, the worst kind of interruption is that which stunts the growth of their character, their heart and soul, their wisdom, and their ability to love others and God.
I am certainly not what you would call a wise old owl of a man, but I am 72 years old, and I have seen a lot of people go from weak to strong, foolish to wise, babies to mature, selfish to loving, carnel to spiritual, and useless to very fruitful. I have also seen those who, for one reason or the other got interrupted, and ended up being a messed up person who is selfish, prideful, a fool, relationally challenged, basically worthless for the accomplishing of anything significant, and with little to no interest in knowing The God of the universe.
How does that happen? I ask that all the time, and I also ask, what can restore a messed up person to healthy growth as a person created by God with infinite potential. The problem is that because of the depth of their selfishness and pride; they think everyone else is the ones messed up and not themselves; it is what Jesus called being self-deceived and blind.
(But, wait a minute, maybe I am writing this as being one of those messed up, self-deceived and blind people that thinks he is a wise old owl but in reality is a dumb possum, fixing everyone else’s problems but his own. In my occupation, I fear that being or becoming the case for sure, and I do a lot of reflective self-examination and asking others what they see in me, but that is another blog.)
I have arrived at some firm conclusions on why a growing number of people are messed up; I have pastored, counseled, and talked with so many people who are stunted in their growth that I have identified the common interrupters to most of them.
Reversing the results of being interrupted is tough, but very possible, but only if they see the need to change, which usually only happens with significant tribulations in their life.
To be continued: