Paul wrote: “Imitate me as I imitate Christ.” The writer of Hebrews advises us to “Remember your leaders who spoke the word of God to you, consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith.” We might be tempted to think that we can forge our own paths and follow Christ based on our own intuition, but there is a reason that we have parents and pastors; it is a great source of strength to observe someone who is living uprightly and then to imitate their practices.
Do we then improvise a little and personalize their example to fit our personality and calling?
Absolutely, but that does not negate the necessity of having Godly examples in our life.
There was a reason that Jesus spent three years with his disciples. Some lessons take time to learn. We can’t always come up with a scripture or a prayer to see us through a tough spot, but we can still determine to live up to the Godly examples in our life until the light of inspiration again shines down on our paths.
Peter wrote: “Add to your faith virtue, knowledge, self control, perseverance, Godliness, brotherly kindness, and love.” Sometimes we need to see what these things look and feel like.
What is virtue? How do we acquire knowledge? How do we control ourselves and persevere? Exactly what is Godliness? And how do we show brotherly kindness and love?
All of us are called to be examples to the world. Jesus said, “You will be my witnesses.” Witnessing is not necessarily something that we do. Rather, it is something that we are. Good witnesses or bad witnesses, those of us in Christ are still witnesses to the world of what God’s love looks and feels like.
It is a high and holy calling, and many crumble under the weight until they learn the secrets of abiding in the vine. Self effort avails nothing. Only by patiently waiting on and listening for the Lord are we empowered to press forward on our pilgrimages to the Holy Land. So, come Lord Jesus and guide us home!
~ Brad Heilhecker