Becoming Like Christ
Life is an adventure, whether it is starting a new job, getting married, or moving to a new town. However, we think there is more to life than just the every day ups and downs. There is an adventure that God desires us all to take, and that is the adventure of becoming like His son, Jesus. As a church, our mission is Leading People in the Adventure of Becoming Like Christ, but that may bring up the question, “What does it look like to become like Christ?” Simple. Jesus was all about Loving God, Loving People, and Living Surrendered.
The C.H.R.I.S.T. Acronym
Through Scripture, we see basic Christ-like characteristics. We put this into a simple acronym to remember: C.H.R.I.S.T.
Connected to God Through Word and Prayer
John 15:4-5 – “Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”
In that passage, Jesus used an analogy of a vine and its branches, and declared that He is the vine and we are the branches. What does that mean? It means we need to stay connected to Him. If the branch breaks off from the vine it will die, but if the branch stays connected to the vine it will live. That means that we must stay connected to Him through the Bible and through prayer, because that is how God talks to us, how we talk with God, and how we grow in our relationship with Him. It is how we stay spiritually alive.
Heart of Worship
John 4:23-24 – “True worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”
Jesus’ life was a life of worship to the Father. He worshiped in Spirit and in truth. Having a heart of worship is when we have a heart that delights in Jesus and expresses praise to him for the things He has done, is doing, and will do. When we discover the depths of His grace and mercy through Scripture, we have no choice but to respond with absolute awe and wonder!
Relates With Other-Centered Love
Ephesians 5:2 – “Live a life filled with love for others, following the example of Christ, who loved you and gave himself as a sacrifice to take away your sins.”
The way Jesus interacted with others was revolutionary. No one ever loved like Jesus did, but how did He do it? Ultimately, relating with other-centered love stems from loving God first. This can be seen in Jesus’ command to His disciples in Matthew 22:37-40 which says, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.” True love seeks to give, not to take. It seeks to help, not to hurt. It seeks to encourage, not to tear down. Loving like Jesus is putting the needs of others first. That kind of love was epitomized on the cross.
Mark 16:15 – He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.”
Jesus’ love was not conditional. His love was not influenced by someone’s economic standing, racial or religious background, or the way they were living. His love was unconditional for all people, and His love was for everybody to experience. We are called to be like Christ, and we desire to model this for everyone, to build relationships with them, and to share the good news and love of Jesus. It is an investment, it is about growing people into disciples, and it is always done through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Luke 4:1 – “Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit…”
Jesus is the perfect example of a Spirit-led servant. Jesus, filled with the Spirit, voluntarily submitted to the will of His father and put His own interests aside, even to the point of dying on a cross. He committed to serve the needs of others before His own; doing so with love, grace, and truth. He was the perfect servant leader, and we strive to serve others in accordance with God’s perfect will, just as Jesus did.
Trustworthy Steward of God’s Resources
Matthew 25:20-21– “‘Master, ‘ he said, ‘you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.’ “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness.”
It is important to remember that everything we have, whether it is our money, gifts, or talents, are gifts from God. We are called to be good stewards, because it is a reminder that we are not owners. Jesus did not see His life as belonging to Himself, but to God the Father. He taught a life of dependence, and warned people about the deceitfulness of putting trust into ourselves and our possessions. God has entrusted us all with specific things, and we are called to use them for His glory.