Home > spiritual formation > What does growth look like and how does it happen?

What does growth look like and how does it happen?


Deep words growing out of the suffering our friend John has experienced following the death of his wife.

by gerard laurenceau

As I continue to reflect of this relentless grief process, I began to ask what growth really looks like.  So often, my view of growth looks something like one of those charts from a business board room – onward and upward, more, better, higher….  Growth means the pain goes away, the wounds heal (without scars mind you!) and the brokenness is quickly repaired with no evidence of the problem.

Increasingly, I’m seeing growth to be a descent from my self-protection, self-sufficiency, competence, control and independence into pain, woundedness, brokenness, dependence and even chaos.  Growth is profoundly disturbing, but Jesus is here, my heavenly Father is holding me and the presence, joy, and peace of God are freely given.  My cry for instant relief gives way to the call to patient transformation at the hands of the Sovereign Sculptor of my heart.  Shaping Christ in me is a masterpiece in the making.  It’s hard to see it from my vantage point.

Thank you John for these growth generating words that you are living through.

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  1. February 9, 2011 at 11:06 pm

    Such beautiful writing and thank you for sharing. When someone shares from their own experience, I am moved. I teach a ECOURSE called Grieving, Growth and Gratitude® that focuses on honoring and embracing the grieving process. I believe that even beyond the last stage of grief thought to be Acceptance, there is Gratitude. When we fully embrace, honor, release our emotions around a loss of any kind, over time we will see the gifts in the pain and be willing to experience gratitude for the experience, sharing these gifts will others.

    I am glad to know that there are others out there who honon and embrace the grieving process as a spiritual one. Blessings to you, Sally

    • February 9, 2011 at 11:15 pm

      Indeed, grieving is a spiritual event. In the middle of a book that is trying to help the church regain our ability to help the believer to die well and I think a key element is grieving which we do not welcome too much before we should get on with it. As I am still learning, the only way past pain is thru it!! Great to have you stop by!!

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