Milestones and Signs of Growth

Maybe I’m dating myself…but did your pediatrician use a milestones chart during your babies’ first year of check-ups?  Ours was included in a small booklet that I still have tucked away.  During those first twelve months of well visits, the doctor not only logged my little one’s weight and length but also kept track of the little milestones – or achievements – that took place between visits.  Milestones that were anything but little to my mama’s heart.  I  was so tickled to report, dare I say brag, of that first rolling over, sitting alone or pulling up on furniture.  As if no other baby had ever achieved such feats:)

But, as silly or giddy as I might have been, the check marks on those charts were helpful – important, even – to the doctor.  All three of my babies, just like all babies, achieved those milestones at different rates.  (My babies were some of the slowest at deciding to walk!!) But, that’s okay.  There simply needed to be progress.  Evidence of growth and maturity.  Those little charts were evidence of that growth.

Fast forward many years and that exercise is still a valuable tool.  The exercise of purposely looking for – even documenting – progress towards maturity.  Today, I am thinking particularly of our spiritual maturity.  There ought to be regular evidence that we are thriving as Christians.  Baby Christians, young Christians, and even seasoned saints should all be growing.  But growth can be small and areas that lack growth can be overlooked.  We need to regularly pause and to reflect   – how have I grown?  in what areas have I not matured as I should? what needs to be done in order to encourage flourishing?  Ask the Lord’s help.  Are there things that need to be pruned in order to promote growth?  Perhaps just a few small changes will make the biggest difference.

Those well visits for my babies (so long ago) were not necessarily designed to uncover huge problems.  Actually, they were a great encouragement to keep “doing what you’re doing” because my babies were thriving.  In the same way, I’m not suggesting there is gross neglect if our Christian growth seems slow or small.  However, noting spiritual progress –  achievements, if you will – is needful, helpful, and encouraging!

My thoughts today on the FMF prompt: achieve.  Which was a bit more like achievements today…but, that’s ok.  The thoughts of others can be found here.  Have a wonderful weekend!

8 thoughts on “Milestones and Signs of Growth

  1. Milestones on life’s hard pathways,
    milestones that are passed, unheeded,
    dog-eared pages, book of days,
    milestones that we badly needed
    to gauge just how far we have come
    in the Godly quest to grow,
    but we’ve only just begun
    to comprehend, let alone know
    of wonder of that which we are
    made by the Lord of Formation,
    heirs unto the Magi star
    redefining all Creation
    to save us all from sin’s fell tide
    to stand as God’s kin, by His side.

  2. My daughter watches the achievement milestones closely for her 9 month old son. 🙂 I got some bloodwork results back this week, and it was nice to know I fit within the range of “normal” for the numbers. So I agree with you that even though we can’t measure our spiritual growth per se, it’s nice to sort of keep track of it just to make sure we’re going in the right direction.

  3. That’s neat that your doctor provided a little booklet with milestones! I kept all of the pieces of paper that I received at a well visits which included my kids’ height and weight. I like the plant analogy of contemplating areas in our life that may need “pruned” to promote spiritual growth. Lots of wise words here and ideas to ponder. Really good post! Have a wonderful weekend!!

    1. I’m not a big saver but I do have those little booklets – which is not only fun but rather impressive, for me!:)

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