“But the noble make noble plans, and by noble deeds they stand.” – Isaiah 32:8 (NIV).
It can be very difficult to figure out what you want to do in life and what your purpose is. We were all put on this earth for a reason and to make a difference. We often have a hard time finding our purpose, but God has one for each and every one of us. We tend to think that our purpose is to do things, and in some cases, it is, but not at the expense of becoming who God wants us to be.
When people accept Christ as their Lord and Savior, our first instinct is to teach them what to do and why they should do it: we teach them to read and study the Bible, attend church, become part of a small group, give, and so on. Those things are very important but we can’t miss the importance of becoming more like Christ. Those are the do’s and don’ts. God has given us the rulebook for living together on this planet. But those are still not His ultimate expectations for us. So, what does God expect of us? God expects us to accept His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, as our Savior. He expects us to give our lives to Him, and in so doing, develop the character of Christ. God wants us to become more like Christ.
When we give our hearts to Jesus Christ, the work within us has begun. Rick Warren said, “Much confusion in the Christian life comes from ignoring the simple truth that God is far more interested in building your character than he is anything else. God is far more interested in who you are than in what you do. We are human beings, not human doings.”
So how do we become the person God wants us to be? The most valuable example that the Bible offers us is our Lord Jesus Christ. Probably you tell others that Jesus is your Savior. Perhaps you think of Him constantly as your Lord. Did you ever play “follow the leader”? One person does a series of actions—jumping, bending, walking— and the others have to do their best to copy the leader’s movements. If you cannot copy him or her, or are the slowest to do so, then you lose. That game is built on imitation.
The idea of imitation is throughout the Bible. Paul writes, “And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ.” (1 Corinthians 11:1). in Philippians 2:5. 8 Paul advises “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: . . .he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross.”
We are on a journey that has not yet reached its end. God has started work on us but the work is ongoing. We are a work in progress not work completed. The reality is that we haven’t arrived at complete maturity. We still stumble and fall. We let ourselves and others and our God down. The goal is to be a little more like Jesus each day. The good news is that one day the journey will end. The One who launched us on the journey and who accompanies us on the journey will take us across the finishing line.
One day, we will be the people God made us to be, and we will be those people forever. No more work in progress, just work well and truly done.
- Have you ever asked yourself, “how on earth are we humans supposed to follow Christ, the Son of God?” What was your response?
- What can we do on a practical level to be more like Christ this week?