I love Jesus. I’m quite the fan.
But frankly, I really struggle to be like him.
I know it’s because as a fallen human, I am not perfect, and so can’t ever be completely like Jesus. The thing is, I want to be more like him, but I find it really difficult.
I find it hard to love those who annoy me. There are plenty of people with whom I don’t see eye to eye, and I struggle to treat them as Jesus would have. He’d have loved them, given them time and shown grace to them. All things I probably don’t.
If I’m honest, I find it hard to love the poor and the lost as Jesus would have done. Yes, I give money to charities which support them and provide hope. But whilst money and support is vital in helping these people, Jesus never gave anyone cash. He gave them his presence and his love.
I wonder what would happen to those around me if I was more like Jesus. More compassionate, gracious and loving. I don’t wonder that from a self-centred, “wouldn’t it be brilliant if more people looked at me and thought I was amazing” perspective.
I wonder it from an honest place of longing to be more like Jesus. Despite all the wonderful programs, five-year goals and objectives our churches put in place, these aren’t going to transform the lives of those around us.
Only meeting Jesus is going to do that.
We are the representatives of Jesus for so many of those in our lives. In my life, I know there are some people whose only contact with the church is me. So how I act matters. How well I reflect God’s love matters.
I wish it was easier, but it isn’t. Being like Jesus can be hard, because it flies in the face of what the world defines as successful.
But the impact it can have on people is beyond anything this world can offer.
For all the struggles we may have with it, the difference our reflection of God can have in the lives of those around us echoes into eternity.
I think it’s time I worked on my reflection.