Personal growth involves four things:
(1) Environment. You must place yourself in a setting that fosters growth. Certain fish grow according to the size of their surroundings. If you keep them in a small tank they stay small, but when you release them into the ocean they grow to their intended size. The same principle applies to you. You must spend your time with the right crowd, in the right place, doing the right things, in order to grow.
(2) Strength. Leadership expert Peter Drucker said: ‘The great mystery isn’t that people do things badly, but that they occasionally do a few things well. The only thing that’s universal is incompetence. Strength is always specific!’ When you try to be good at everything, you end up being good at nothing. God gave you specific strengths—identify them and use them.
(3) Change. Most of us want things to get better without having to change anything. The Bible says, ‘Let us… be taken forward to maturity.’ (Hebrews 6:1 NIV) To grow, you must commit yourself to not only accepting change, but to pursuing it.
(4) Enjoyment. Most grandmasters of chess learn and relearn their moves over a period of fifteen years before winning their first world title. That’s almost one-fifth of their lives! If you’re going to spend that much time doing something, you’d better enjoy it! If the destination appeals to you but you’re not enjoying the journey, you’d be wise to seek God’s guidance and make sure you’re heading in the right direction. If you’re on the wrong train, don’t keep going—get off at the next station!