I was recently walking around a lake with my daughter in silence. She dropped her pacifier on the ground. I picked it up, blew it off, put it in my mouth to clean it (a parental habit), and gave it to her. I gave no thought to what I was doing, since Eden is our second child and I was focusing more on the aesthetics of our surroundings. After examining the binky for a moment, Eden reached down, picked up a dirty leaf, and put it in her mouth. What in the world? And then it hit me…she’s imitating. She was a few months past her first birthday and in a stage in early childhood development that could overall be categorized as “imitation.” She imitates everything. At times it’s downright obnoxious! But it convicts me as I realize it doesn’t matter how aware I am of her imitation or what I am doing that she decides to mimic. I am reproducing myself – my words, my mannerisms, my facial expressions (big one!), and my actions. Whether you realize it or not, the answer to the interrogative title of this post is, yes.
In 1 Corinthians 4:16, Paul writes, “I urge you to imitate me.” While this may seem excessively bold and possibly even arrogant, he speaks in the next verse of his “way of life in Christ Jesus.” Then, in 1 Cor. 11:1 he clarifies, “And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ.” No one can argue that at the core of Paul’s identity Paul was a disciple-maker. We remember the names of Silas and Timothy, disciples of Paul who would disciple others…who would disciple others.
Someone is imitating you. The question is, are you leading a life worthy of imitation? Are you making disciples of Jesus Christ or disciples of someone or something else?
Holy Spirit of God who raised Jesus from the dead, make us like Him, so that those who imitate us are imitating Christ. Amen.
Grace and peace,