It’s almost summer!
In light of us all busting out the flip flops and Birkenstock’s, let’s talk about how we can look like Jesus this summer (whether we are in his footwear or not).
You might come up with a different 10, but here’s my first shot. And yes, very much meant to appropriately provoke all Jesus followers, including myself.
1 • Hang out with sinners.
“Now the tax collectors and sinners were all gathering around to hear him. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, ‘This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.‘” (Luke 15:1, NIV)
2 • Afflict the comfortable.
“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence…. You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean.” (Matthew 23:25, 27, NIV)
3 • Comfort the afflicted.
“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” (Matthew 11:28-30, The Message)
4 • Promote the dignity and worth of women.
“Jesus said, ‘… go find my brothers and tell them’ …. Mary Magdalene found the disciples and told them, ‘I have seen the Lord!’ Then she gave them his message.” (John 20:17-18, NLT)
5 • Protect children.
“And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me. If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.” (Matthew 18:5-6, NIV)
6 • Care more about reaching the lost than catering to the found.
“Who needs a doctor, the healthy or the sick? I’m here inviting outsiders, not insiders—an invitation to a changed life, changed inside and out.” (Luke 5:31-32, The Message)
7 • Care nothing about power, prominence, position or prestige.
“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant.” (Philippians 2:5-7, NIV)
8 • Live simply.
“Don’t take any money in your money belts—no gold, silver, or even copper coins. Don’t carry a traveler’s bag with a change of clothes and sandals or even a walking stick.” (Matthew 10:9-10, NLT)
9 • Be anti-racist.
“When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, ‘Will you give me a drink?’ (His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.) The Samaritan woman said to him, ‘You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?’ (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.)” (John 4:7-9, NIV)
10 • Make sure it’s never about you.
“For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:45, NLT)
I hope James’ list inspires you as much as it did me. What a great reminder on how we can look more like Jesus in 2021.