Eight hours a day Microsoft is my world, and in that world, Format Painter is my BFF. However, when it comes to being like Christ, Format Painter is what the Pharisees did to become “white washed tombs”….not what we are going for!
Format Painter applies the outward appearance of what you want to copy, but it doesn’t change the wording (the heart of it). Jesus is all about changing our “wording” – the heart of us.
A few years ago, I was scrounging for something to create. I said out loud “I really want to trace something”… the Lord whispered back: “Trace Me”.“I wanna be like You Lord, I wanna be like you”
I don’t just want to look like Jesus; I want to be like Him. The Words of the Living Word change us to our very core, not just the outward appearance.
With Jesus, we are to live how He lived, loved how He loved, and yes…even forgive how He forgave. Man, that’s a hard one. Recently, just as the Lord is removing the insulation I’ve kept around myself (for good reason) I was hurt yet again by the same people who seem to keep hurting me. What do I do?
Do I stop and not allow Holy Spirit to continue His work in me? Do I keep the walls up? Do I walk away? Everything humanly/fleshly screams out that I have a right to do those things…Jesus says: No. (Forgive my rhetorical questions; the class on Romans is rubbing off on me)“I wanna trust like You Lord, I wanna trust like You” “I wanna see like You Lord, I wanna see like you”
The Lord used a great friend to send me some worship CDs. Song 5 on Jason Upton’s “Glimpse” album is about forgiveness. (Lyrics throughout this post) I sang along. Then realized I was hearing: “I live to forgive” sung over and over… it wasn’t the song, it was Jesus.
Jesus lives to forgive, and if I (we) are to trace Him; we must live to forgive too.“To look in the eyes of a friend…and forget they were my enemy. And see the way that I could be”
In the song, Jason speaks of the verse where Jesus is in the Garden and Judas comes to betray Him. Peter cuts off the ear of one of the guards, and Jesus asks Peter: “The cup which my Father has given me, shall I not drink it?” (John 18:11)
Drinking the cup Father gives us is a place of trusting God most of us haven’t reached. As we drink, we have to trust in the “no matter what” that could be in the cup.“Forgiveness…let it go, let it go, let it go. We don’t forgive because people deserve it; we forgive so we can see again”
- It is a place in spiritual maturity where we can look into the eye of our betrayer and say: “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.”
- It is a place of willingly laying down our rights, even our deserved rights, and tracing Jesus’ character with our actions, and being transformed by it.
- It is a constant choice, when the hurt feelings rise up, to choose to forgive all over again.
- It isn’t a place where we wait for them to change… it is an unfair (fleshly speaking) place where I have to change to be like Christ – even in the face of being wronged.
- It is a place of losing a lot of flesh.
Related post: Wide Open