Have you ever heard the saying, “Little eyes are watching you.”? That was a common phrase around family events when I was growing up. Generally, it was when one of my Grandparents was correcting the behavior of someone who had gotten out of line.
There’s weight to that statement. Our lives are influencing others, even when we don’t realize it. Recently, I had three funerals in a matter of a few days. These were good men, Godly men. Men unashamed to love God and love their families.
One afternoon on my drive home from the office, I was praying and meditating on what God would want me to say at each of these services. That’s when a common thread each of these men shared became very clear to me. Each of these men lived a life before their family and friends that left it’s imprint on their souls. They had made a lasting impression on the people who knew them by the life they modeled. In their own way, these men had each lived a life that was worthy of imitation by the succeeding generations.
As you can imagine, each memorial service came and went and there were tears of loss and sorrow, as well as, laughter from humorous memories. There was also something else. There was a sense of comfort, a sweet peace. Where did their comfort come from? From two very important sources I believe. First and foremost, God. Second, from the testimony lived out by the one they loved.
To be a Role Model, You Must Be Intentional:
God is our ultimate source for comfort and peace. He is and always will be faithful because that is who He is – He is our faithful God. However, we aren’t perfect. Our nature isn’t self-less and always bent on doing what is right. We have to make a choice to be faithful. To live a life that leaves a positive imprint on the hearts of others is our choice to make. To be a role model, you must be intentional.
The Apostle Paul encouraged the church in Corinth by saying,
Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ. – 1 Corinthians 11:1, NKJV
He was encouraging those he led to follow his example, while informing them that he himself was following the example given by Christ Himself. He would continue this theme in other writings found in Holy Scripture such as to Timothy and Titus where men are encouraged to train other men and women to train women.
To be a Role Model, Perfection is Not Required:
The three men for whom I preached their funeral, they were not perfect. Fact is, I have yet to meet a perfect person. Yet, these men each lived in such a fashion that their families did not have to doubt their character, integrity or faith. That was a choice each made.
Even Paul, whom I have already referenced, wanted those he led to know he wasn’t perfect, but he was intentional. Paul wrote,
I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection. But I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me. 13 No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us. – Philippians 3: 12-14, NLT
Paul never said, “Don’t look at me.” He knew that people were watching his life whether he wanted them to or not, so he decided to set his goals on being more like Jesus and by that, he could live a life worthy of others imitating. That’s a great example for all of us to follow.
Over the next few weeks we are going to look at traits found in a life that leaves a positive impression. I encourage you to join me each week here on the blog as we dive into this topic together. Also, share this blog on your social media sites, with your family and your friends. Most importantly, ask the Holy Spirit to guide the steps of your life so that you can leave a positive impression on others. Never take for granted the influence your life has on others.
Here is a snapshot of some of the topics we will address in the weeks ahead.
- Being a Role-model is not for cowards.
- Loving is Always the Right Way.
- Integrity – Be Willing to Pay the Price
- Let Faith be your Trademark
Until next week…