Monday, October 09, 2006

On becoming a model

And so you became a model to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia.
1 Thessalonians 1.7

I've always wanted to be a model. Really? No, not really. Certainly not a model that struts or slinks down the runway -- more like, you know, a role model. And it's not something I've wanted always. When I was a kid, my parents would tell me to try to set a good example. This put pressure on me for no profit I could see.

But now that I am an adult, or at least I act like one most of the time, the idea of being an example to others, a role model, is something that gets my attention. Would there be glory for me in that? Maybe a little. But the exciting thing is the chance to be helpful to others.

So in order to be a model, what do I have to do, or to become?
We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.... You know how we lived among you for your sake. You became imitators of us and of the Lord; in spite of severe suffering, you welcomed the message with the joy given by the Holy Spirit.
from 1 Thessalonians 1.3,5-6

So work of faith, labor of love, endurance of hope, acceptance with joy in spite of suffering. Got it. No wonder they were a model! So how does someone like me get to be like that?

Well, I can see one clue in the passage, right there at the end: "joy given by the Holy Spirit." How do I get this joy? Apparently the Holy Spirit gives it, so I think I'm going to try this two-step plan that I just made up.
  1. Ask.
  2. Wait expectantly.
I'll let you know how it turns out.

No comments: