For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.
Whose Mind Is in You?
Who do your co-workers see when they look at you? Do they see Fred or Mary, or do they see Christ living in you? Do you get in the way so much that they can’t see Christ? God foreknew us to be predestined into the image of His Son but not just any image–into the same image of Christ (2 Cor. 3:18). What does this image that people see in you look like? Do they see more of Christ, or do they see more of you? What does it mean that we’re to be conformed, not into the image of the world but transformed by the renewing of our mind (Rom. 12:2)? The word “conformed” in the Greek is “syschēmatizō,” from which we get the word “schematic” or “pattern,” and this word means “to conform one’s mind and character to another’s.” The “another” in this case is to be transformed or changed into the image of Christ (Rom. 8:29). If our minds are renewed or transformed, then that is what people should see. A transformation on the inside usually shows up on the outside. Do your co-workers see that in you?
Whose Light Is It?
Paul quoted Genesis chapter one when he wrote that God made the light shine into the darkness, and this light He caused to shine into our hearts (2 Cor. 4:6). Sometimes this light hurts the eyes of those who are in the dark because they have been in the darkness for so long. When we are revealing the light of Christ shed abroad in our hearts through His Spirit (Rom. 5:5), people cannot help but notice. It is not so much you they don’t like as much as it is the true source of that light, and that is Christ, Who Himself is the light of men (John 1:4, 9). There is a delicate balance between putting our light on a lampstand (Luke 11:33) and shining it directly into their eyes. Even worse would be hiding it for no one to see (Matt. 5:15). We are that light set upon a hill, which can seen from a distance. This might mean that, like a flashlight, we can’t go right up to people and shine it in their face because it hurts their eyes, but the light must be seen in order to expose the darkness. Is it the light of Christ they see?
Who Are You Imitating?
Paul told the church at Corinth to imitate him but only because he was imitating Christ. Therefore, whatever we do, say, and think should be imitating Christ. They say that imitation is the highest form of flattery, and that is exactly what God wants us to do in imitating Christ. If we do, our co-workers cannot help but see Christ. Paul tells the church at Philippi the same thing, to follow his example because his example was a godly one, and that is a great model to follow (Phil. 3:17). More specifically, Paul tells the church at Thessalonica to be imitating him, his companions, and the Lord (1 Thess. 1:6) because, he hoped, they would be imitating a godly way of life. So my question to you is are you and I letting others at work see God in us and, more specifically, Christ? Can our co-workers see Christ in us, or do they see no difference between us and their fellow workers and themselves? Good question, isn’t it?
A Closing Prayer
Righteous, holy God, my Father, I need Your supernatural help to imitate Christ because I cannot do this in my own strength. I need Your Spirit to help empower me to allow my friends, family, and co-workers to see Christ in me, and in Jesus’ name I pray.
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