Anger,frustration, disappointment, anxiety, impatience; these are all emotions that are regularly a part of most everyone’s day. As I’ve grown in my walk with God, I generally have a better handle on these things but admit that there are days when I struggle with them.
Years ago, I met a lady who, when I walked into the room, radiated peace, tranquility and a completeness that I had never encountered before. This woman exuded the heart of Jesus. She had ten or so children, homeschooled, lived on her husband’s single income and was so content and delighted even, with exactly how her life was that I was somewhat in awe.
I have thought about this lady quite a bit over the years. I have had the privilege of knowing and being friends with some lovely Christian ladies and I appreciate all of them so much. In each of my friends, I am able to identify elements that stood out so clearly in that lady from the past.
As I am going through my day to day, there are occasions when I evidence some of the Christ-likeness that I long for but there are also many times when I am lost to the world of my emotions. One thing I am learning, however, is that the more time I spend with certain character traits, the more likely I am to integrate them into my attitude and behaviour. For example, if I am with sewing friends, I tend to get excited about sewing. If I am spending time with homeschool friends, we focus on homeschooling. If I spend time with people who are manipulative, angry or coveting what they do not have, I tend to fall into discontent. If I spend time with those with a desire to grow in their relationship with the Lord, then that helps me to be motivated in that part of my life.
I’m not saying that I cannot choose to grow in the Lord unless someone else around me is doing it, but those things with which I surround myself are the things that seem to have the greatest impact on me. Knowing that, if it is my desire to be more like my Lord Jesus, it would seem reasonable that I spend more time with Him.
Spending time with Jesus means reading His Word, praying, listening, taking the time to love others the way He has loved me. Becoming more like Jesus is a decision that I alone can make. I can choose to focus on the “me time”, trying not to get lost in my role as a wife, mother and homeschooler or I can focus time on Him, losing myself in His grace, forgiveness and love.
They key element of a relationship with Jesus Christ is sacrifice. He gave up everything for me. He sacrificed. He took the first step. He set the example. Now it is my turn. Do I have the time, energy or inclination to give up anything for Him? To give up everything for Him?
If I want to Jesus to be reflected in my life, I need to be willing to let go of the things of this world and make Him my goal. Christ-likeness doesn’t mean liking Christ, it means BECOMING like Christ. Jesus gave up His right to self in order to serve me (and you, incidentally), to love me and to help me have the desires of my heart.
Now the question is, what are the desires of your heart and how are they driving you?
It is my earnest desire to become so like my Saviour that when others walk into the room, they will see Him reflected in my life.
Do not conformed to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – His good, pleasing and perfect will.
2 Corinthians 3:18
And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory are being transformed into His image with every increasing glory, which comes from the Lord who is the spirit.