This morning I woke up to severe thunderstorms rolling through our city. Being someone who loves a good storm, I was happy to hear the rain and thunder - until I got on the highway and realized that the rain was causing traffic to back up. To make matters worse, I was scheduled for an early morning meeting, and so I felt the pressure to get there on time.
Feeling confident in my driving abilities, I made the decision to move to the fast lane, and see if I could get around the traffic. The result is that I ended up driving a little bit over the speed limit. And when I say “a little bit”, I mean about 20 miles per hour over the limit. All was going well until I noticed a police car in my rearview mirror. I immediately slowed down, and as the officer pulled up closer to my car, I took my foot off the accelerator - made sure my seatbelt was on - and that I had both hands firmly planted at the “10:00” and “2:00” positions on the steering wheel.
As my speed dropped, the police car pulled into the right hand lane and went around me - without incident. After my heart rate returned to normal, it occurred to me that all-too-often I live my life like I drive - speeding along, busily carrying out my own plans, until I see God pulling up behind me. Then I make sure I'm doing all the “right” things so that I won't get in trouble.
For those of you wondering, it’s not the best way to live. 1 John 2:6 makes this clear, as it tells us: “Those who say they belong to God should live their lives as Jesus did.” As I thought about that verse this morning, I wondered what my driving would be like if I was trying to imitate a police officer. And the answer was: a lot different than how I drive when no cops are around.
The same should not be true of my spiritual life. I should strive to imitate Christ in ALL I do, whether I sense Him right there with me, or not. If I do, then others will see what's different in my life, and hopefully, imitate me imitating Christ - and God's Kingdom will expand. And what is true for me, is true for all of us. We should work to imitate Christ in all we do.
So today, let’s ask God to give us the desire to be imitators of Christ. Let’s intentionally set aside our own hurried agendas, and instead, focus on how God wants us to live. And then, in our words, actions and attitudes, let's reflect Christ to all those around us.