We are poured out like a drink, as we get older, that’s how Paul sees his life. And ours. We have such as a short time on this earth, ever being made aware of that as we get older. Let us pray that we also get wiser!
Paul is really instructive on people getting wiser. If we have heard Jesus calling us, then surely we want to move deeper in our hearing of His Word touching our lives. Many times scriptures speak about spiritual milk, so when Paul reminds the Hebrews (chapters 4 and 5) that they are selected by God to grow in faith (just as we are, just as Jesus was), he tells them to desire maturity enough to EAT SOLID FOOD and not regress to just milk.
Craving milk then solid food as a progression, that’s basic growth in our human needs… my daughter just had her wisdom teeth out and it’s quite a process moving to solid food. There’s a time when you just don’t want to eat the soft yogurt or down protein shakes anymore and you just want a cheeseburger (and five-guys fries). With desires to heal, you have a motivation to not undo the stiches, but you need food. It’s a taste for more sustenance.
The sacrifices of old testament peoples were of real animals, probably ones they could have eaten, but didn’t. Their Spiritual feeding was met by meeting with God. What’s our sacrifice? Our time. 100% our time. Add sacrificing our desires to control our own lives and you can see where God wants your commitment. This is not all bad, this is direction. This is the ticket to peace. “God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them.”
In our own motivation to mature, we move from faith sound bites to reading deeper into the foundations of faith, scriptures for the soul… We are given motivation to mature by God Himself who calls us not to be glorious in our own eyes but in His, to listen to our guts and inner spirits about our lives and where to take them. Our internal compass is set by God’s direction, if we take our hands off of it.
It would be too easy to continue just on milk (or milkshakes) in our eating but that’s not going to keep satisfying our continued growth. So, as we all know, it is time for us to eat some solid food of faith, real meat, maybe some five-guys fries allowed too… We are to enjoy the Word and make it heard. Make the most of your meal!
HEBREWS ch4: 1-5, 11-14: ch5:1-12
Every high priest is selected from among the people and is appointed to represent the people in matters related to God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. He is able to deal gently with those who are ignorant and are going astray, since he himself is subject to weakness. This is why he has to offer sacrifices for his own sins, as well as for the sins of the people. And no one takes this honour on himself, but he receives it when called by God, just as Aaron was.
In the same way, Christ did not take on himself the glory of becoming a high priest. But God said to him, ‘You are my Son; today I have become your Father.’
Warning against falling away
11 We have much to say about this, but it is hard to make it clear to you because you no longer try to understand. In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.
Therefore let us move beyond the elementary teachings about Christ and be taken forward to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death, and of faith in God, instruction about cleansing rites, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. And God permitting, we will do so.
Even though we speak like this, dear friends, we are convinced of better things in your case – the things that have to do with salvation. God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them. We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end, so that what you hope for may be fully realized. We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised.