who wants to make progress?

{five minute friday: progress}

Progress is defined as the forward or onward movement toward a destination.

So what is the destination or goal? You only know you’re making progress if you know the destination.

Every one of us is headed somewhere. Those who have placed their faith in Jesus as Savior have an eternal destination of Heaven according to Ephesians 2:8-9 and Acts 16:30-31 and others. Those who have not, do not.

So if that is our ultimate destination how can we, as followers of Jesus, make progress? Obviously our forward progress is not related to our bank account, our status, our possessions or even our followers.

Scripture commends believers to make progress by instead growing in the grace and growing in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (2 Peter 3:18)

Good ole Peter. I mean ya gotta love the guy! He made incredible progress in the eternal direction in the course of his tenure on earth. He knew Jesus intimately and then blatantly denied Him with his words and actions in a pivitol moment. I, for one, can relate all too well. Denying Jesus with my words and even more so with my actions in a pivitol season that could have gone very differently.

But instead of rejection in return Jesus offered steadfast love and grace for the rebellious child, for Peter and for me. The kindness of the Lord broke me and drew me back. It so impacted Peter that when he had been sifted like wheat he returned to strengthen his brothers, just as the Lord had said he would in Luke 22:31-34. Then Peter pens the words of real progress as he opens his second epistle.

He basically invites his readers to move forward towards an eternal destination. Here’s our how -to based on 2 Peter 1:5-7.

For real progress we must make must every effort to supplement our faith

with virtue, lived out moral goodness

with knowledge, which refers to application knowledge of God gained by direct relationship with Him

with self-control, which is an inner domination of oneself accomplished through the power of God within us and our choosing to yield to it over flesh

with steadfastness, or patient endurance as we wait on the Lord rather than rush ahead with our agenda

with godliness, an inner response to the things of God, reverence towards Him

with brotherly affection, genuine love for other believers

and with love, which is sacrificial and other’s focused rather than self-seeking and self- focused.

We have no hope of conjuring up these virtues in ourselves. Therefore real progress does not come from our efforts, but rather in practicing to yield ourselves to the compelling grace of God as we have opportunity (and, boy, does life provide opportunity!). As we seek to grow in these virtues we begin to make real progress in that which matters, that which is eternal.


In order to make progress we must spend time in the Word of God. To learn to do that for yourself, drop me your email below and I will send you the simple method I use.

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14 thoughts on “who wants to make progress?

  1. I can’t climb this hill alone,
    the trail is steep and muddy,
    so my outstretched hand is thrown
    to that of my good Buddy
    who knows the trail and knows the way,
    and His love will never bend,
    so with His help I need not stay
    in pride’s fetid dead end.
    Together we move ever-higher,
    and lowland mud is dried;
    so good to clear the foggy mire
    and find on mountainside
    sun shining on a day so fine;
    and upward still, His hand holds mine.

  2. Mariel, I was blessed to read your words this afternoon. This past week I began looking at the fruit of the Spirit so this so fit in beautifully. We have no hope of producing fruit or qualities apart from the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives through the spending of time in the Word. It is the way we make steadfast and lasting progress.

    1. oh amen!! How desperate we are for His Spirit’s leading!! Grateful we have nothing apart from Him because I would’ve kept doing it myself if I could’ve. Thanks for reading!

  3. Everyone relates to Peter but be definatley have a progressive journey with Christ personally and through his spirit. He worked at this and look at the results. What lesson we learn from him 😊 fmf #7

    1. yes peter is a great example, but I don’t know that it was his work as much as Christ in him that brought him to a place of God reliance. I am grateful we are not called to try harder but rather to surrender more. Thank you for reading❤

  4. I hadn’t thought before about how Peter is such a great example of someone making progress in following Jesus. You can really see him growing so much as you go through his story. And it’s a great encouragement to us to keep making progress.

    1. yes, he is my hero of the faith because we both like to talk before we think and have seen Jesus bring great redemption to mighty messed up sinners. Thanks for reading!

  5. I love Peter so much! One commentator I read said “Peter’s heart was not seen in his denial but in his repentance.” Oh how sweet the grace of God is! There is hope for all of us no matter what we have done.

    I am so thankful for your blog and your wonderful words of encouragement. I have needed them so much over the past couple of weeks.

    Love,
    Annie

    1. oh Annie, what a great quote about Peter, and really about us too!! Love the grace in that! Grateful to have been an encouragement to you!❤

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