The Problem with WWJD

Do you remember the acronym of WWJD? Yep, it’s “What Would Jesus Do?” While that is a good question to keep in mind and a great way to help us choose the best action or reaction, I think that question skips an important step.

Holy Land - Jan 2015

Julie took this picture on her trip through the Holy Land in January, 2015. It is a depiction of Jesus healing the paralytic man who was lowered through the roof. By using only the power of His word, Jesus healed the man! This picture is from St. Peter’s church in Capernaum where this demonstration of love and compassion took place.

Look what St. Peter says:

Since Jesus went through everything you are going through and more, learn to think like him… 1 Peter 4:1 (MSG).

The missing step is thinking like Jesus. You see, actions are the result of your thoughts. Before we can act and live our lives like Jesus, we need to first think like Jesus.

Learning to think like Jesus is one of the most effective ways to bring your vision into your reality!

So let’s take a look at Jesus’ time here on earth.  There were 3 things that filled Jesus’ thoughts, which affected his actions.

Thought #1: VISION. Jesus was very clear about His purpose for being on this earth. His purpose was to seek and to save the lost- Luke 19:10 and he did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many- Matthew 20:28

Because it was very clear to Jesus in His mind and heart what He was here to do, His actions reflected His vision.

For example, In Matthew 16: 21, it says: From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life.

Jesus KNEW what his vision was! It was always in his thoughts and it drove his actions. He was crucified, died and rose again on the third day (Mark 16: 6-7).

Thought #2: FOCUS.  Jesus’ thoughts were so focused on His vision, He kept taking action toward His vision in spite of obstacles from Satan and even from those closest to him.

In Matthew 16:22, when Jesus announced his purpose to his disciples we see that even Peter tried to interfere with Jesus’ vision:

Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, “Never Lord!” he said. “This shall never happen to you!”

And what was Jesus response in verse 23?

Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.”

Thought #3: COMPASSION. Yes, Jesus had a clear vision!  Yes, Jesus kept laser focus on that vision! But He also had a mind and heart full of nothing but love and compassion. Jesus was thinking compassionately which caused him to DO compassionate works.

Look through the Gospels and you will see countless acts of compassion performed by Jesus. All of His miracles were a result of the compassion He had for humankind.

Matthew 14:4 says, When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick.

Then of course in Mark 8:2 it says: Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion for these people; they have already been with me three days and have nothing to eat.”

Then after Jesus took the loaves of bread and fish and offered thanks, in verse 8 it says:“The people ate and were satisfied…”

Now back to you (and me)

What’s the take away lesson for those of us who have a clear vision for their life? Learn to think like Jesus.

1. Get crystal clear on what your vision is for your life. What are your hopes and dreams for your future? Keep that vision in the forefront of your mind. Consistently thinking about your vision will drive you to take ACTION! Without a vision, you lack direction and miss out on the wonderful blessings God has waiting for you!

2. Maintain FOCUS on your vision. Refuse to let stumbling blocks and obstacles divert you from moving toward the future you envision. Beware of the people who may lack the faith you possess. They can end up discouraging you from your vision, telling you what you are trying to accomplish is “too difficult.” Peter, one of Jesus’ closest disciples, couldn’t quite understand Jesus’ vision and tried to interfere with it. Keep an eye out how the devil will try to use people, events, and fear in order to interrupt your faith and cause you to lose focus of your vision.

And finally, above ALL ELSE….

3. Think Compassionately. You can’t be SOO focused on your vision that you fail to notice the hurting, the needy, the outcasts, and the lost. The person you fail to help JUST might be the person God sent specifically to you to help you accomplish your dreams. Jesus was acting on His vision when He was preaching to the thousands of people, but he was also aware of their needs and provided. So each day, put your mind in compassion mode; not “my needs first” mode nor condemnation mode.

YOU have a purpose, so start thinking VISION, FOCUS, and COMPASSION. Then just watch the GLORIOUS UNFOLDING of God’s fulfillment of your vision and the blessings that He has all set up to give you!

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