In “Jesus and the Disinherited”, Howard Thurman wrote, “…the most important question, since the thing which makes Him [Jesus] most significant is not the way in which He resembled his fellows but the way in which He differed from all the rest of them. Jesus inherited the same traits as countless other Jews of his time; he grew up in the same society; and yet he was Jesus, and the others were not.”
Sure, Jesus was the Son of God, but He also came to earth as a fully human man. He was free to choose however He wanted. His desire and love for God necessitated He make choices we do not have to contemplate, and He chose the right way every time. What if we possessed such love and devotion for the Father? What if we could do nothing but please Him?
The love and devotion of Jesus is the example He set for us all. He chose to think only of the Father and the mission He was sent to accomplish. We don’t do this so well. Is there anyone or anything for which you can truthfully say you have perfect love and devotion? Of course not. We are sinful, pride-filled and selfish people. The closest most of us get to perfect love and devotion is to ourselves. Still, I get excited when I consider living a life of pure love and devotion to the Father.
How would your choices differ if you possessed the love and devotion Jesus had for the Father? There is so much we do on our own behalf while giving only a passing glance to our proclaimed Lord and Savior; I hate that. My guess is you do as well. But do we hate it bad enough to change? Are we willing to set our eyes on Jesus and commit to living our lives perfectly and wholly devoted to Him?
We all give our love and devotion to something or someone. The problem is, it’s rarely to God. Let me challenge you to do something: the next time you are spending time in prayer, set aside a few minutes to just contemplate living in perfect love and devotion to Christ. Consider what it would look like and how you would feel knowing this to be the central driver of your life. Just be still as you contemplate these things and close by rededicating your life to Christ and asking Him to instill perfect love and devotion to Him in your heart.
Love and devotion are the calling cards of Christ’s disciples. We should exude love to everyone we meet, always building them up with an encouraging word (Ephesians 4:29) and filling needs they may have as we are able. Our lives must look like Jesus. Read through the Gospels. Study the things Jesus did and said. Notice the choices He made. Recognize how His every move was in step with His Father above. This is the life to which He calls each of us. This is the life available to all who will believe and trust in Him. Let your love and devotion be centered and directed on Jesus alone. Only He is worthy. Only He will not fail. Live your life for Him as He lived His for you.