Inspirational Thought of the Day:
Copying someone worthwhile is one of the most worthy investments we can make.
Scripture of the Day:
1 Corinthians 11:1
“Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ.”
“Join together in following my example, brothers and sisters, and just as you have us as a model, keep your eyes on those who live as we do.”
1 Thessalonians 1:6
“You became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you welcomed the message in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit.”
1 Corinthians 4:16
“Therefore I urge you to imitate me.”
“Mom, he is copying me again! He is eating the same thing I am!” What a crime, right? Why is our flesh bugged when someone wants to do the same thing we do? Imitation is said to be the sincerest form of flattery, but maybe to some people it is just being competitive.
Name brands and generic brands vie for the same consumer. The imitation brand might not be the same quality, but it serves the same purpose.
Doing the same thing over and over again is B-O-R-I-N-G, yet the consistency gives a stability and a peace. We know what to expect. The disciplines of the Christian life are precious tools that help us to walk faithfully before God.
When Paul told the believers to imitate him, he was not talking about his style, preferences or food choices. Each one of us is uniquely gifted from one another and we are not mean to be carbon copies. Paul was talking about us following his passion and love for Christ and His service for the Kingdom of God.
Asking someone to emulate us is humbling. Not one of us is perfect, but Paul knew that. He did not allow his weaknesses to disqualify him – he boasted in them, for then God received all the glory.
We are who we surround ourselves with. People can influence us and we can influence them. Imitating excellence is one step closer to greatness, just as mindlessly following bad examples brings us down. We are either impacted by the culture around us or affecting our culture for Christ.
It might be easy to follow someone if they seem blessed, but following an example of suffering is another matter entirely. There Paul sat in chains, appealing to us to follow him. Seems crazy at first, until we see things beyond the surface. Sometimes walking with Christ will bring persecution, but the treasures we gain in the midst are priceless.
When Paul was inviting us to imitate Him, He was inviting us to die. Sweet death that brings true living, though. To follow after and hunger after God is one of the hardest things we will do. We have to resist the flesh and seek to do what is completely contrary to it. God help us to be mindful of who and what we are following – our decisions today may very well affect all of eternity.
Lord, help us to seek to be like You. When the world tries to lure us to be comfortable and apathetic, help us to never grow weary in well doing – for is due time we will reap a harvest.