As believers in Jesus, we learn that we are to “be like Jesus.” We are told that spiritual maturity is becoming more like Jesus every day.

Yet, how do we do this and not fall into one of two traps – self-loathing or pride?

If we believe it’s up to us to become more like Jesus, then when we “succeed” (at least by our own account) we can quickly succumb to taking credit for being so “good.” This is a pride that will lead to arrogance.

Conversely, if we believe we are failing in our attempts to become more like Jesus, we can fall into another trap of the enemy – guilt. Guilt leads to self-hatred and belittling.

Clearly, neither of these results is desirable. So, what are we to do?

I believe, we are to reflect Jesus – not mimick Him.

The difference is key. When we attempt to “be like Jesus” through mimicking His behavior, His words, His way of life, we will fall into the above traps. We will think it’s up to us to get it right. It becomes our work.

Instead, the Bible says that Jesus is our life. The Apostle Paul wrote about his old self being crucified with Christ and that the life he now lived was no longer his own, but it was Christ living within him. Paul reflected Christ by allowing Christ to live His life through Paul. You and I can do the same. Here it is Christ at work in us and through us – He is completing what He started.

Think of it this way, when something is reflecting an image, it’s not working to do so. It just is. The same is true for us. Having believed in Jesus’ perfect life, sacrificial death, and proving resurrection, we now are filled with the Spirit of Christ Himself. The Bible says our spirit becomes one with His Spirit. We’re not creating the Spirit within us, it is just who we are now, in Christ.

So, reflect don’t mimick.

This is what it means to be lead by the Spirit and not your flesh (your human effort). You’ll know you are reflecting when it’s clear that you’re not the one creating the image.



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