"We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised." Hebrews 6:32 NIV
When you were a child, did you ever want to imitate someone? Someone you truly admired? Maybe it was a movie star. Or maybe a family member. Maybe someone in the history books.
We have a young son who wants to do everything that his older brother does. They are two and a half years a part. Just enough time to know that the older brother gets to do some cooler things than he does. It really bothers Peter that Joey always wants to do or be what he wants to be. Being the mom, I try to smooth it over by making the statement that it should be a honor that someone loves you enough to want to be like you. Doesn't help Peter's feelings of frustration about being an individual. And then of course I have to add the fact that since his little brother looks up to him, it is his responsibility to be a good example.
But it is true. If you want to imitate someone, make sure that it is someone worthy to be imitated. That is why it is important who you hang out with. That is why it is important that you have very strong and grounded Christians as accountability partners. Especially for new Christians just beginning on their journey.
Did Jesus just hang out with anyone? No, He picked His close friends/followers, very carefully. He--of course--was imitating His Heavenly Father. We--in turn--should be striving to imitate our brother--Jesus Christ. How? By getting into the Word. By hanging out with people that are grounded into the Word. And by praying. Praying for insight to becoming friends with people that your Heavenly Father wants you to.
You see, there can be a tendency to hang out with people that are easier to imitate--people that don't have such a strong definition of what is Biblically wrong or right. You may have found out by now that it tends to be easier that way--it's the lazy way.
Imitating those who have great faith and patience--now there is your prize! That is where the major inheritance is. Jesus never said that going the right way, would be the easy way. What He did promise is that the inheritance received through faith and patience, far out weighs it's value than all the gold of Easy Street.
Imitating the shallow living of Easy Street or the life changing living of the Road of Hard Knocks? What would you chose?
"Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil but what is good. Anyone who does what is good is from God. Anyone who does what is evil has not seen God." 3 John 1:11 NIV