Yesterday we discussed imitating Jesus, yet several of the Bible passages I cited had to do with Paul telling his readers to imitate himself! “Be imitators of me,” he wrote, “just as I also am of Christ.” (1 Cor. 11:1), Wow! How many of us would be that confident?
Yet, like it or not, we don’t get a say in this! Each believer already is a letter to this world, “known and read by everyone” (2 Cor. 3:2), “Christ’s ambassador” (2 Cor. 5:20), announcing, ‘This is what Christ is like!’ Daunting indeed, but that’s exactly what this whole “light of the world,” “salt of the earth” stuff is about!
The good news is, whether you believe it or not, you are already equipped to do this. Here’s something from an old Our Daily Bread devotional:
Some Christians assume that being a good example means keeping up an appearance of strength — even when they are weak. They have the misconception that any appearance of weakness hinders their testimony… Are unbelievers best won to Christ by ‘strong’ people who pretend they’re never weak, or by ‘weak’ people who testify of a strength not their own? Unbelievers often say of the former, ‘I could never be like that.’ But of the ‘weak’ people they more often say, ‘If Christ can help them, perhaps He has something for me.’ – Our Daily Bread, Aug. 16/96.
There’s no need to hide your weakness, your fears. Your weakness is in fact your strength in disguise. It forces you to Christ for a strength beyond yourself. As Paul acknowledged, “…I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me… For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Cor. 12: 9, 11) He will do what you cannot.
Now, if we are going to imitate Christ completely, there’s another bit that we simply must accept – crucifixion. I rather suspect that is what Pastor Steve is going to touch on this coming Sunday at Lincoln Baptist Church.
Be brave, and don’t miss it!