Did you ever think you knew something … but when you thought about it more, you had to wonder?
What about being Christlike? I’ve prayed that the Lord would help me to be Christlike. I’ve admonished people to be Christlike. Yet, I never asked myself, What does that word Christlike really mean? How would I develop a Christlike attitude? If I wanted to be more Christlike, what would I do?”
Well, I know that Jesus was gentle; He was kind and He sought to do good for others. He also preached against those whose motives for doing good were only selfish. In fact, I remember Him denouncing evil more than praising the goodness that He saw in men and women. Maybe I got it wrong. But no, I’m sure that I got it right. The prophets did the same thing. They saw a goodness in God that they didn’t seem to be able to describe to us. But they could describe how far short we fell of that goodness—and they denounced our sin.
We have so many Scriptures that admonish us to be like Jesus. I know that I want to be Christlike but sometimes the whole thing seems a tangle. And then it came to me: what characterized the life of Christ was not a passive trait such as kindness and gentleness nor was it His admonishments.
What characterized the Savior? He was a lover. He did not love passively; He was always giving something. It wasn’t particularly coins in the Temple coin box; He did things for the poor that were impossible for others to do. The lame were healed and could walk, leap, and run. The blind could see. And those who were the dumb were able to articulate their feelings and communicate. Leprosy was virtually incurable, but Yeshua cured it.
I don’t find that I have the ability to love people so much or to spiritually connect so perfectly that the lame walk and the blind see, and the lepers are made clean. Yet just wanting people to be healed, hoping that the poor would be fed is not enough. To be like Yeshua, I must be a giver.
So, what can I give? Well, I can give gentleness, kindness, patience … the Fruits of the Spirit. Yes, God has given them to me, and I can give them to others. But wait a minute. I can give more, and what I can give is the word about Jesus, the World’s Best Giver. I can give Jesus’ love so that anyone, everyo ne could experience that love, that healing, as much as I have experienced it. I can reflect the light that He shined on me, and thereby give the light to those who are all about me. If some receive me, I can share the joy that I have in the Lord, and teach people how to enjoy what is, to others, apparently nothing. Because that’s what this gift is to the world—nothing—unless or until they have the Jesus connection. And, hey! I’m one of His connectors. I’ll keep doing my best to connect people to Him. That’s how I can be Christlike.
As I thought about Jesus, I penned some words that aren’t exactly prose or poetry. I wanted to share them with you. Maybe you will connect with them:
God is without body.
He has no form,
Except that of a babe born in Bethlehem,
A small refugee who became a man so far from home.
Yet, through His body, and through His blood, a world of people was nourished and came to life.
God extends communion to us,
He gives life,
And calls us into strength and holiness;
He calls us to goodness,
And to giving-ness.
Oh that we, like Him, should become nourishment to bring nations to life.
And through that refugee babe,
May we see the mighty Lord,
Who prevails over all.