Of the many choices Jesus made, His outstanding selfless deed to leave heaven to come to live on earth with His full knowledge of what lay ahead, truly boggles my human mind! It seems to me that once in heaven, were it even possible, I, (and likely not one of you!) would ever want to return to earth! I am so very thankful for the life He lived in this world, for the true stories of how He handled so many of life’s situations, of how He must have looked people directly in the eye as He dealt with them, maybe with a hand resting upon a strong shoulder during a conversation, sometimes with an arm around a frail body, giving strength as He spoke Truth, because His very being exuded Truth, Truth in a simple human body.
When He gave the admonition to “Do unto others as you would have them to do unto you,” (Matthew 7:12) He showed He’d already done so by His life. But, when someone is unkind to me, the temptation is to pay them back when I know I should rather have a Jesus attitude, both because it would mean my obedience to Him and because that is truly how I’d prefer to be treated! “But it’s so hard, Lord.” Can you imagine me looking my Lord in the eye and saying that to him, the One Who hung on that cross for hours so my picky little sins as well as my tremendous blunders could be forgiven? In one sense, neither can I*, but if I believe the Bible (and I do) Hebrews 4:15 (NIV) says, “He was tempted in all ways just as we are.” THAT was the human Jesus. (And because of that, I could and I can talk to Him about anything*!)
First of all, it should be obvious if I choose to treat others as I want to be treated, then I’m going to be thoughtful, kind, and compassionate. Yet, when someone is unkind to me and my first thoughts are far from kind and compassionate, how opposite of the way of Jesus is that? So how did He handle such?
I Peter 2:23
“and while being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously;”
Ah, do you see the secret there? Instead of responding in kind, He turned it over to His Father God! We read in other passages where He went aside to pray, often to be alone, sometimes early in the morning, sometimes all night. (Luke 5:16; Luke 6:12; Matthew 14:23; Mark1:35) Yes, the human Jesus left Himself totally in His Father’s care. How did He do that? I’m going to suggest it was through His practice of making a choice. Yes, He had made THE CHOICE to follow His Father (“Don’t you know I must be about My Father’s business?” Luke 2:49) but He, like we, had to keep on making the decision to follow that choice. Part of that choice was keeping in close contact with His Father, God.
Oh, my! What a long way I have yet to go! I am so thankful for the compassionate kindness Jesus has chosen to show me. How can I help but want to be more like Him? In my thankfulness for the life He lived on the earth and for the example He chose to set for me, I know Jesus chose, therefore, I can choose, too.
© M Sue