This is a picture of my daughter as she and some of her friends were working a recent pumpkin sale we had at church. The kids spent some time on the highway waving to folks to get them to notice the hundreds of pumpkins we had for sale.
Okay….I’ll admit it. The kids really didn’t need to wave to get people to notice the pumpkins. They were noticable….very noticable, but the kids had fun making a sign or two and receiving responses as people honked their horns and waved. It made the slow times in the pumpkin patch a little brighter.
Who knows? Maybe it made the day a little brighter for the mom hurrying to take her kids to an afternoon lesson, practice, or other appointment. Perhaps it made the truck driver, sleepy in the afternoon sun, a little more alert to the road and even more alert to his current position with God. They might have even changed the outlook for a husband frustrated with the demands of his job and his young family.
Actions that help Christians and near Christians recognize each other whether it is a t-shirt with a Christian message, a WWJD bracelet, a fish magnet on the back of car, and even with a honk of a car horn are great. It’s nice to belong to a club. It’s nice to share commonalities with folks. It’s nice just to recognize each other because it validates who we are….I’m ok because they are like me.
Being a Christian, however, is so much more than just recognizing others who share the same ideas. Being a Christian is a never ending quest to become more Christlike. True, it is a goal that will never be reached became of our humanity, but it is a worthy goal and as Christians we are charged with undertaking the quest. Colossians 3:9-10 states You have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its creator.
1. Christ had humility. In his Letter to the Philippians Paul reminds us to be like Christ in that we need to do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. (Philippians 2:3)
2. Christ was all about love. John 13:1 states Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved His own who were in the world, He now showed them the full extent of His love.
3. Christ was into service to others. Jesus said, No one who puts his hand on the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God. (Luke 9:61-62) and Romans 15:17 explains Therefore I glory in Christ Jesus in my service to God.
4. Christ was obedient. When tempted in the desert Jesus told Satan, Away from me, Satan! For it is written: Worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only. (Matthew 4:10)
5. Christ was an optimist. Look to the future. Keep your eye on the prize. He told us, Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matthew 6:34).
6. Christ forgave. He did not hold a grudge and taught others to forgive as He forgave. Luke 3:3 states He went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.
7. Christ was kind-hearted. There are really too many examples to list here, however, Matthew 19:14 is my most favorite example where he said Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.
8. Christ was empathetic. When Jesus was confronted by the Pharisees regarding an adultress He did not join in on the condemnation. He did not shame the woman. He didn’t have to. He felt for her even though He knew she had done wrong. He said “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you? No one, sir, she said. Then neither do I condemn you. Go now and leave your life of sin. (John 8:10-11)
9. Christ was dogmatic. Christ never speculated.
10. Christ was authoritative. “Not in a dictatorial manner, not because He held office since he held non on a human level, but because the thing He said was so. It grips the heart of the hearer, and men know that the thing He said was so.”
11. Christ had intelligibility. “He spoke to be understood. Evidently the passion of His heart as a Teacher was that the listening man should grasp the thing He was trying to say.”
12. Christ was rational. “He alsways appealed to the rational, always appealed to reason, constantly called the human mind to sit in judgement upon the thing , Himself content to abide by the true and unbiased judgement of the human mind.”
13. Christ was illustrative. His illustrations were remembered and always taken from everyday life.
Christ was also patient. “He was never content with their attainment; but gradually and progressively He imparted knowledge to them all the way through, waiting for them with infinite patience.” His actions were purposeful in that “He never taught men anything merely to satisfy intellectual curiosity.”
The information given from number 9 through the end of the list comes from an address given by Winona Echoes from 1925 to the 31st Annual Bible Conference.
Find other 13s here.