The God who makes men and women unique image-bearers, with special dignity and value also will complete the work He begins in those who follow Christ. He means to mature them to be more like Jesus, who walked the untainted life that showed us what humanity was created to be.
While no man or woman will reach perfection this side of heaven, we do grow. So what traits are present in a spiritually mature woman?
The following characteristics are often present in those who have cultivated a rich spiritual life.
1. She is at Rest
How are you? Busy?
You can be busy and still be a woman at rest. A frantic hustle of a woman on the move shouts to those around her, “I don’t have time for you,” but there is a way to hustle without frenzy. Jesus showed it to us perfectly when he stopped to talk to people along His way: the bleeding woman who boldly and desperately reached out to him for healing, he let the little children come to him, and he broke barriers of racism and sexism to grab a drink and speak with the woman at the well. He was at rest even though he squeezed world saving, soul rescuing ministry into only three years.
2. She is Bold in Her Convictions
Philosophies contrary to the truth of God cross our paths daily, we must learn to be bold in our convictions. Bold does not mean angry, or nasty, but rooted in a resolute strength, sourced in the Almighty God.
As we grow in faith we are empowered by the Spirit of God to stand when the winds and waves of fear start to blow. Boldness presents in the mature woman as an active faith willing to stand against impossible odds. It is a proclamation of, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31 NIV)
3. She is Submitted
We live in a culture where the word submission is most often heard in the context of a cage fight, but the Bible paints it as an expression of love. Submission is an act of laying yourself down for another, and also an admission that we can trust God to always make the right decisions.
We step into the tension created by submitting all we are to God, even when it requires a sacrifice of our own desires, commanded to “submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.” (Ephesians 5:21) We submit not out of fear, or coercion, but first out of reverence for Christ and then love for the other.
4. She Exudes Gentleness
If you have ever been gently told something incredibly hard but wise beyond words you know the power of gentleness. In such a loud world we need a revival of the resounding gentleness that can speak to the hearts of those who have been accosted by the noise of hate, bigotry, and hyperreactionism.
Gentleness is a fruit of the spirit and is more powerful than we often give it credit. If the Spirit of God sees it as something worth producing in us, shouldn’t we seek to display it as much as possible? Not only is gentleness powerful, but Paul told us in Ephesians 4:2 that a life worthy of Christ’s calling would, “Be completely humble and gentle…”
5. She is Humble
Humility is becoming a lost art. It comes without the demand for being seen or right. It is a life that embodies the words of John the Baptist: “He must become greater; I must become less.” (John 3:30) John knew the purpose of His life was to put Christ on display, as did the apostle Paul.
In “The Sacred Mundane” Kari Patterson says “Paul knew that joy is found in living outside ourselves. He knew that abundant life wasn’t found in endless navel gazing and self-improvement. He wasn’t climbing higher and higher; he was bowing lower and lower.” Both John and Paul knew that true life and humility don’t begin until we get to the end of ourselves; maturity means seeking that instead of bracing against it.
6. She is Scripture Saturated
If you want to grow in Christian maturity you cannot do this without constantly going to the Word of God for guidance, comfort, and instruction. We know that our salvation doesn’t come from our Bible reading, but our ability to live in the abundance we are designed for does.
We need to have God’s truth meet us from within the quiet of our heart at the moment dissatisfaction, chaos, and suffering strikes. We need to know His words so that we can measure the difference between truth and deception. As we read His words, we let them be written upon our hearts, and apply them to our life for all our days.
7. She is Justice and Mercy Oriented
These two blend perfectly though many view them as opposing. They exist perfectly within God and the spiritually mature woman knows they are both necessary to shine a light in to the world, so she walks forward with Micah 6:8 echoing in her footfalls.
“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”
8. She Has a Love for the Church
A spiritually mature woman will know the church for what it is: the bride of Christ. Yes the church is flawed, and the whole of the church is composed of those who sin. There is not one who is perfect but the bridegroom. Loving the church is one of the ways we as believers get to be like God.
We see the flaws in the object we love, but love anyway. We aren’t passive about it’s wrongdoings, but we do not forsake it because of them. We dig in. Engage. We fight to make it what it should be. We choose to love it, even if it shows itself unlovely.
9. She Has a Heart for the Lost
When we as women understand how deeply we are cherished by a holy God, we cannot help but be brokenhearted that others do not know the love they were designed for. The fallen world has wrought havoc on the searching souls roaming the earth, and we are given the balm for the ache in the gospel, that reveals the unsearchable riches of Christ.
The ways we go about it may differ, but we should all be searching for how God wants to use us daily. We can never forget that each day we walk this earth we have the chance to share the good news that not only can help someone find hope for today, but an eternity in heaven.
10. She is Dependent
The truest mark of a woman of faith is fierce dependence amidst a culture cheering for unbridled independence. She knows she can’t do it on her own, but can rely on the power of a God who can do more than she could ask or imagine. The spiritually mature woman knows just as the psalmist Asaph knew: “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” (Psalm 73:26)