This verse jumped off the page at me this morning and reminded about something that I've been processing, namely the whole idea of what it means to be a "mature" Christian. First off, I think that we all, at first blush, want to consider ourselves "mature." I mean, have you ever heard anyone say, "I'm immature for my age." Of course not! Almost everyone, at some point in their lives, says, "People tell me that I'm mature for my age." Instead of seeing immaturity as something that is a phase and a plcae that we should learn from, we see it as inferior, or second-class, or something. When it comes to spirituality, I think it's the same deal. We all want to consider ourselves as mature when in reality we're probably not...especially as a 31-year old, what right do I have to claim maturity for myself? So, as I read this passage two thoughts struck me. One, I'm grateful for the mature Christians in my life that have patiently resisted the urge to argue with some of the stupid ideas that I've proposed in my immaturity!
Two, related to the first, it confirmed for me the importance of having relationships with people where I put myself in the learner's seat. It's easy to always see myself as mature and therefore in the position of teacher, but in reality I probably ought to be the Padawan more often than I am the Jedi Master (Star Wars geek talk!)
Three, I was challenged between my role as a pastor - to challenge and introduce new ideas -- and my role as a Christian in light of Romans 14, to avoid arguments. (I'm out of time, or I'd write more)