Jesus Christ, fully God and fully man, is the one true hero. He alone will never be surpassed, but neither will we surpass what we grow to be if we model ourselves on him.
[...] Modeling – observing and copying – is vital to discipleship because of the biblical view of the way disciples must learn. There is always more to knowing than human knowing will ever know. So the deepest knowledge can never be put into words – or spelled out in sermons, books, lectures, and seminars. It must be learned from the Master, under his authority, in experience. When we read in the Gospels that Jesus chose twelve “to be with him,” their being with him was not some extra privilege they enjoyed. It was the heart and soul of their discipleship and learning.
The above is from Chapter 10 ("My Utmost for His Highest Still") of The Call by Os Guinness. That chapter asserts that a response to God’s call has the potential for unleashing in us a passion for the deepest growth and highest heroism in life. One of the ways that passion becomes reality is through imitation or discipleship.
I am working through the study questions at the back of the book. Several of them gave me pause. For example, how would you have answered: Who are your heroes, and why?
Here is another that deserves some thought: Practically speaking, what does imitating Christ look like for you, the twenty-first-century believer?
Here are some of my imitation methods:
1. I make it a priority to become familiar with Him and His teachings in the Bible. I read through the Gospels often. I study them and try to understand Jesus’ wisdom, His charm, magnetism, and humor. I think about His teachings and try to put them into practice in my life – a life that doesn’t contain yokes or millstones or trying to pick figs for snacks.
2. I imagine myself with Him. I look at my life with Him, review my day or a situation I've just been through with Him. When I know someone well, I have a pretty good idea of what kinds of reactions to expect. Sometimes I even ‘hear’ the words they would say. I try to do that with Jesus.
3. I imagine Him in the situations I face. I try to see Him interacting with my neighbors, the Superstore clerks, the doctor’s office receptionist. What would He say to them? What would He see about them that I have missed?
4. I pick out people who remind me of Jesus and try to figure out where is the similarity. I study those people.
How would you answer that question?