Living Like Christ

My mother died rather suddenly many years ago, and I never got to tell her how much I appreciated the example she set for me. As my dad dwindled down his last few months, I made it a point to tell him several times how much I appreciated being raised by a Christian man, one who set many examples for me with regards to a work ethic, how to handle money, priorities in life, spiritual dedication, and so much more. I certainly wasn't perfect at any of those myself, but I have survived well because I had a great mentor.

The deal with my parents was that they rarely had to sit us down and instruct us, although there were times, but most of the time we simply had to watch them. They showed us how to live, love, and be a good honest citizen, how to manage adversity and hardship, and how to lean on God through it all. Their faithfulness was evident, not something we ever had to question, not ever.

And as good as my parents were at it, they weren't perfect though. But our Lord Jesus was perfect. If you haven't read Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John recently, put them on your reading list again. Spend some time refreshing yourself about what we know of Jesus's life while He walked on this earth. Jesus had plenty to say, and plenty to instruct, but he also said a whole lot simply by the way He lived, how He treated people, how He loved people.

If only we could emulate His daily behavior, our lives would be so much richer. We would know the joy He desires for us to know. We would serve our fellow man in such a great capacity if we could live like Jesus, but we know we can't be as good as He was while He lived here. That, however, should not discourage us from trying, because every time we do get it right, it's a good thing for us and potentially for someone else.

Let us look long and hard at the things Jesus did, how He did them, and try to reproduce those in our lives as much as possible. Let us try and understand His motivation. We are instructed in Philippians 2:5 "In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus"... Paul goes on by saying Jesus did not consider equality with God as something to be used to His advantage. Christ, "made Himself nothing", and took on "the very nature of a servant", as He took on a human likeness, that of a man, and "he humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, even death on a cross".

As we read and learn about the life Jesus lived here, let us remember it was sacrificial, as He humbled Himself before God, and He obeyed His Father's will, going to the cross. Our job in life is to humble ourselves before Christ, to try and reproduce His life, to act as He did as we interact with others, especially those of His family, and to be obedient to Him.

May we have the mind of Christ in all we do. What we learn simply by Christ's living example can teach us in the same way as what we learn by His words. Let's learn from Him.