“Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 2:3-5
Think of a person you admire and whose life you’d like to model. Is this person a great athlete? Is he or she an extraordinarily gifted artist or entertainer? Maybe this is someone with an incredibly analytical mind or great self-discipline. Maybe it’s a parent or coach, teacher or mentor. For me, the person I most long to be like is Jesus and here’s why: No one has ever been more devoted to God’s will while being so loving and loved by sinners.
All throughout history, there have been very dedicated “religious” people. They do all the right things and appear to obey all the rules, but they are often resented by those on the outside, the non-religious, and the “sinners.”
Then there are those professing to be Christians who affirm the sins of others, mistakenly thinking this is love. This, however, is the antithesis of Christ’s attitude toward sin. Jesus hated sin, and yet what makes Him so extraordinary is His incredible love for sinners. Time and time again we see broken, hurting, and flawed people drawn to Jesus. That’s the difference. Jesus was never the ruling, powerful, Messiah the religious leaders expected. Instead of leading from a position of power, Jesus led by loving and serving.
Jesus’ purpose was not to condemn or reject, but to freely offer His sacrificial love. This is the Jesus that I follow. This is the person I most admire. It’s His life I want to emulate. Jesus, who never weakened the truth, but loved without condition in spite of our shortcomings. So who do you admire the most? Maybe it’s time to consider getting to know Jesus.