PASTORS' DAILY DEVOTIONAL
Just Like JesusMarcus Sanders
Acts 4:13 (HCSB) "When they observed the boldness of Peter and John and realized that they were uneducated and untrained men, they were amazed and recognized that they had been with Jesus."
In our society a degree from college has a greater weight in obtaining a job. Peter and John faced the same barrier when they stood before the elders and the priests. Their words were not taken seriously and they were considered the unlearned of Israel. The elders understood that unlearned men, fishermen, are prone to mechanically do what they say and by instilling a little fear they could manipulate them. But to their surprise they were faced with men anointed by the Holy Spirit. As with all inquiries, their question among themselves probably was what made these men so bold and educated. The only conclusion they arrived with was they recognized these men had been with Jesus. It was like Jesus was in the room. The fishermen's answers were just like what Jesus would say to us. Their boldness was like the boldness Jesus had when we approached Him. These untrained men were just like Jesus.
What a wonderful compliment for someone to say, "You're just like Jesus". You see Jesus is not the education alone. We cannot stand on our education as the basis of knowing much of God. For knowledge of God is built on a relationship. When Moses settled disputes between the people he had no books to help him. He had a relationship with God that enabled him to be a counselor and leader. To be like Jesus is a relationship with God in action. I believe a great example of this is our response to life as a whole. How is my personal view of others? Do I see them just like Jesus sees them? Everyone is a 10 somewhere and Jesus sees this potential. When I see the potential in others more than their flaws, I'm just like Jesus and living a relationship in action. How do I communicate with others? Am I saying what is on the top of my head or do I filter it with the Gospel of peace. To respond like Jesus is to speak in love as He did. Love has several layers of depth like a parent's love, a friendship love, artistic love, and a love for a hobby but the love that fuels relationship in action is a self-giving love that doesn't expect back. It's the depth of love that moved Jesus to go to the cross. Any response with this depth of love looks "just like Jesus." As I reflect I think of the many times where I have fallen short of being "just like Jesus". The problem is that I seem to pick up my old identity instead of renewing my new identity with Christ. At a construction site in the department store the sign reads, "Pardon the mess, we're still under construction". It's not an excuse for the store to be messy but an apology for a process to get better. I believe the process to grow as a Christian can be messy but it is a process to be "just like Jesus". That is my desire and my response in life to live my faith in relationship to my God; to be just like Him
Father I am the piece of clay you are still working with to produce a masterpiece. May I see what You see, hear what You hear and do what You do in this life on earth. Shape me to be the man You want me to be in Jesus Name.