How many times have you heard someone say of a child “she looks just like her mom!” or “he’s the spitting image of his dad!” I think most times that’s meant to be a compliment. Recently my mother said when she sees me leading worship I remind her of my older brother Barry who passed away many years ago. I guess when I look in the mirror I can see some family resemblance.
As followers of Jesus, we should receive the same comment when people come in contact with us. We should hear the words “he’s like Jesus” or “I can see Jesus in her!”
That’s who we should be like, but often times we are nothing like Jesus.
He loved everyone, no matter what; we love while looking for something in return. He hung around the worst sort of sinners; we shun them or even worse call the police. He forgave those who beat Him and ultimately put Him to death; we hold grudges for years waiting for the other person to make the first move.
How crazy is it that we say we want others to have a relationship with Jesus, like we say we do, because He is so good and He saved us from our sin! Yet we walk around like someone just ran over our family pet or like we just ate something that didn’t agree with us. I’ve gotta say, that’s not very convincing or appealing to people who really need to hear the Good News!
Good news should bring a smile, don’t you think?
Jesus said we are to love God and love others…as ourselves. Maybe that’s our problem, we don’t even like ourselves. It’s hard to love others when you look in the mirror and don’t like what you see. The reflection of the person we do see is often bitter because life didn’t pan out the way we’d imagined it would.
It’s so easy to look back and say “what if” I went to a different college then maybe I’d have a better job? Or “what if” my parents hadn’t been so hard on me, then maybe I might not be so hard on my own kids? “What if” I’d made better choices, then I wouldn’t be in this predicament today? “What if” is a phrase that reeks of regret!
Regret. Just. Plain. Stinks!
This past year I decided that I would not live with regrets. I made up my mind to risk more, not in a bonehead kind of way like risking our retirement fund on some crazy scheme. But through prayer and perseverance I am determined to not take the safe and easy road just because it’s safe and easy.
Too often we shy away from risk in favour of embracing what is safe and comfortable. Jesus reminds us in Matthew 5:13 that we are to be like salt in this world. Salt adds flavour. I don’t know about you but I’ll go for flavour over bland any day!
That may have seemed like a rabbit trail, but stay with me a little longer. When we are more like Jesus, salty and not playing it safe, we are more like Him and less like others. We are less like we used to be. Of course we are still fallen creatures who still have a propensity to do and say the complete opposite of Jesus, yet when we keep following in the footsteps of the One whom we most reflect, I’m confident we’ll hear people say “hey man, you’re a lot like Jesus!”
That’s what I want to hear! What about you? As image bearers of the Most High God, let’s make sure people see Him when they see us!
Chime in…I’d love to hear your thoughts!