Simple Rule No. 5 – Is Your Life an Example Buffet?

January 1, 2005

Hello! It may seem to you that we have been studying these “few” simple rules forever, right? Believe me, I thought that recently myself as well! However, I’ve truly learned a great deal from this passage from Timothy, and I genuinely hope that you have as well. I also pray that we continue to allow these words to penetrate our hearts as we learn just a few, yes I promise a few, more simple rules we can live by.

Simple Rule No. 5 is taken from 1 Timothy 4:12, which says, “Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.”

We hear the term “specialization” as well as the common phrase “jack of all trades; master of none.” These terms allude to the fact that many of us either specialize in basically one area or we are semi-skilled in many areas and not highly skilled at anything. Is this how we desire to live our lives? Absolutely not – we want to be the best we possibly can be in all aspects of our lives, especially when it comes to our Christian walks with God.

Similarly, we are not to be jack-of-all-trades-Christians. Our Heavenly Father desires us to excel in our relationships with Him and to apply that close, personal relationship to our everyday lives. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law,” (Galatians 5:22-23). We are to apply each of these characteristics to our every moment. We do this not to purely edify ourselves, but to edify those around us. Someone is always watching, looking to you as an example. It is vitally important to continually assess our lives and our actions to evaluate the Godly appropriateness that they present. We are examples – just look at these verses:

– 1 Peter 2:21: “For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow His steps.”
-John 13:13 – 15: “Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.”

Let’s remember what “Simple Rule No. 5” says – be an example, or a pattern, of everything in Christ, including our word, our conduct, our love, our spirit, our faithfulness, and our cleanliness. The question I want to leave with you is probably one you have never been asked in you whole life. Does your life reflect the “buffet” of Christ-like characteristics that God Himself has encouraged us to display? Instead of exuding all these marvelous characteristics that comprise our “buffets”, do you specialize in one of them or even none of them at all? I encourage you today to examine yourselves to discover the answers to these questions. Hopefully after this, you will be able to dip from your buffet of Godly characteristics to become the example that God desires each of us to be!

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