When my family and I moved to a new town, I was hired as the Director of Discipleship at our new church. For me, that means that Sundays and Wednesdays are full and that on these days I have to come up with a quick dinner or leave my husband and young daughters to fend for themselves. That’s why I’m grateful we have a microwave. When I’m pressed for time, I sometimes prepare a simple meal of baked potatoes. Instead of the hour it would take to bake them in a traditional oven, we have them ready in seven to eight minutes. That’s fast—near instant gratification!

While I’m appreciative of our microwave on jam-packed days, I know that growing in spiritual maturity is not instantaneous. Even Jesus, though sinless, took time to grow “in wisdom in stature and in favor with God and all the people” (Luke 2:52). Like other Jewish children, He certainly hid Scripture in His heart by memorizing, reflecting on, and studying it while He honored God the Father with His life (Psalm 119:11). He also “learned obedience”—experiencing what it’s like to obey God even when it would cause Him pain (Hebrews 5:8). Like us, Jesus grew and matured.

To be Christlike includes the idea of growing in our faith so that we resemble Jesus more and more (see Romans 8:29). Every time we obey God by His power, opting for His agenda instead of someone else’s or our own, we’re working “hard to show the results” of our salvation. As we do, we can be sure that God is working in us to give us “the desire and the power to do what pleases him” (Philippians 2:12-13). As we obey God in a myriad of little steps, we’ll make our way toward a life that looks more like that of His Son.

NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: Joshua 1:1-18