We all begin a relationship with God on a subjective level through our own personal salvation. But our growth (or sanctification) is the process of discovering that God does not exist for us; we exist for him. “True worshipers will worship the Father in Spirit and truth (John 4:23)”— speaking not of my truth, but of his truth to which I adjust myself and my thought processes. New believers have come to God because he has met their need; mature believers come to God regardless of their need. They come because he is God and he is worthy of their worship and allegiance.
— John Fischer, from “The God Who Is… Where”, www.rationalpi.com/theshelter/tgwiw.html
God … is very gentle with very young Christians, just as mothers are with very young babies. Often the start of their Christian career is marked by great emotional joy, striking providences, remarkable answers to prayer, and immediate fruitfulness in their first acts of witness; thus God encourages them, and establishes them in ‘the life.’ But as they grow stronger, and are able to bear more, He exercises them in a tougher school. He exposes them to as much testing by the pressure of opposed and discouraging influences as they are able to bear—not more (see the promises of 1 Corinthians 10:13), but equally not less (see the admonition, Acts 14:22). Thus He builds our character, strengthens our faith, and prepares us to help others.
— J. I. Packer, quoted in Decision Making and the Will of God by Garry Friesen, p. 286
Above all He works on us through others.
— C. S. Lewis
How can we know Christ more profoundly? One of the ways that I have found most helpful is to allow others to tell me of how they encountered Christ and the impact which he has had on their lives.
— Alister McGrath
The Epistle to the Hebrews describes the spiritually mature as those “who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil” (Hebrews 5:14 NASB).
— Calvin Beisner, from Answers for Atheists, p. 161