“Dad, I want to be just like you when I grow up.”
Those twelve words said to me by my 10 year old son, Ashton, made my heart swell.
[Picture me smiling while holding my chest and nodding my head up and down.]
My boy wants to be like me!
The reality is that he probably doesn’t want to be like me all of the time.
Why? Because I’m a work in progress.
I mess up.
I make mistakes.
I lose my temper.
I do things I shouldn’t do.
In fact, I do all of the above…at the same time…while driving my kids to school.
Thank God we’re all a work in progress—which is why we should heed the following words of Apostle Paul:
Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are His dear children. -Ephesians 5:1 (NLT)
I’m flattered that my son wants to be like me, but I would much rather him be like Jesus.
“Those who say they live in God should live their lives as Jesus did.” -1 John 2:6 (NLT)
Be like Jesus.
If we’re going to be like Jesus, then we should:
1. Say what Jesus said.
2. Love like Jesus loved.
3. Do what Jesus did.
Today, I will focus on saying what Jesus said.
11 Things Jesus Said (That We Should Say)
1. I Am The Only Way
Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me. -John 14:6 (NLT)
Jesus is the only one who claims this.
This is what separates Jesus from all others…and this is also what offends so many people.
If you were the devil, whose name would you attack? Have you ever heard someone else say Buddha’s name in vain? Have you ever stubbed your toe on a bookcase and yelled, “Buddha!”?
Because there’s absolutely no power in the name of Buddha. He’s dead.
But there is power in the name that is above all others: JESUS.
And it’s only through Jesus that anyone can come to the Father.
2. Give Up Your Own Way
Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross, and follow me. -Matthew 16:24 (NLT)
Give up own way.
Take up your cross.
3. Seek The Kingdom Of God Above All Else
Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. -Matthew 6:33 (NLT)
Are you creating your own empire or building God’s kingdom?
4. Stop Sinning
Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?” “No, Lord,” she said. And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.” -John 8:10-11 (NLT)
A lot of people try to justify their sin by quoting the first sentence that Jesus said the adulterer’s accusers: “He who is without sin cast the first stone.”
Too often we forget the last thing He said to her: “Go and sin no more.” In other words, “Don’t do it again.”
There’s a difference between loving sinners and celebrating sin.
When it comes to sin, we have to be close-minded. This is why Romans 12:9 says, “Hate what is evil.”
“Some people are so open-minded their brains fall out. They say, ‘I can watch that stuff. It doesn’t bother me anymore.’ That’s the problem! When you can watch and read stuff that is profane, blasphemous, evil, vile and abusive and it doesn’t bother you, you have a problem. You have become a fool.” -Rick Warren
5. Don’t Judge
“Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you… -Luke 6:37a (NLT)
The best way to get the plank out of our own eye is to hate our own sin more than someone else’s sin.
“…Forgive others, and you will be forgiven. -Luke 6:37b (NLT)
Forgiveness is a journey.
Forgiveness does not mean you condone what was done against you.
Forgiveness is less about the person you are forgiving and is more about you.
Forgiveness is liberating.
“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” -1 John 1:9 (NKFV)
8. Stay Salty
“Salt is good for seasoning. But if it loses its flavor, how do you make it salty again? -Luke 14:34 (NLT)
Stay devoted to Jesus.
“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)
One slogan our church adopted after attending a conference at Newspring Church in Anderson, South Carolina is “Saved People Serve People”.
10. Pray Always (And Never Give Up)
One day Jesus told his disciples a story to show that they should always pray and never give up. -Luke 18:1 (NLT)
As Mark Batterson says, “Work like it depends on you and pray like it depends on God—because it does.”
Then Jesus said to the disciples, “Have faith in God.” -Mark 11:22
There are numerous times throughout the Gospels where Jesus commands us to believe.
I want to be like the father who cried out in Mark 9:24, “I do believe, but help me overcome my unbelief!”
Faith is the foundation for all of the above.
[Cue the epic song by Journey.]
Don’t stop believing.
I created this blog post from a recent sermon I preached. You can watch it by clicking HERE.
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