“Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.”
1 Corinthians 11:1 NIV
One of the most beautiful hymns ever written can be recited by most. Many non-believers know the first verse because it’s a standard song during Easter services and funerals. “Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me; I once was lost, but now am found, was blind but now I see.”
We meet Jesus. We ask Him into our hearts and lives as a guidepost and anchor in times of distress. We become infatuated with the newness of our faith and the love we feel for our Lord and Savior, much like when we fall in love with another person. In time however, the infatuation period ends and real life hits us, sometimes hard. We’re not sure about this Jesus now because life didn’t suddenly become sunshine and roses. We’re unsure about our decision. Was it the right one? What was I thinking? Is God real? Does He really love me? Is there truly a purpose for my life? Who do I tell of my uncertainty?
A new Christian left unattended can so easily be swayed back to the darkness of this world. No matter our age, friends may think this new life we’ve chosen isn’t cool, or we may be made fun of for becoming a “Jesus freak.” Let’s face it, becoming a Christian can sometimes be challenging, especially if you are from a non-believing family. All of a sudden we go from the joyful serenity of “I once was lost but now am found,” to uncertainty and feelings of “I once was found, but now am lost.”
As a seasoned Christian who has traveled the road of the lost before, I feel compelled to do my best to nurture the newly found Christian. Our scripture reference today reminds us, “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1 NIV).
We are all called to set an example for those young in faith. We are to point them to scripture, teach them the importance of prayer, and make sure they are baptized. Leaving a new believer in Christ to figure it out on their own is in and of itself shameful.
I see a baby duck trying to make her way into the pond for the very first time. She’s at the water’s edge, looking back at the safety of the shore; she needs a nudge of encouragement from a sibling to take that first step into this unknown world. She has never swum before, but the water is so inviting. The thought of this refreshing new life is drawing her in, but she’s still so unsure. She makes the decision; yes, she’ll try. She needs to keep her eyes focused on mom just ahead.Is this a good idea? Mom wouldn’t lead me astray now would she? Okay, here goes…
Just as that baby duck needs to keep her eyes focused on her loving mama, we need to encourage those new in faith to keep their eyes focused on our heavenly Father. When the baby duck sees her siblings gleefully swimming behind mom, she feels more secure in taking the plunge. If they can do it, so can I!
As seasoned sisters and brothers in Christ, it is our job to give those small nudges of encouragement to our new little siblings. As we set the example of what it looks like to follow Jesus, they will feel more secure in taking the plunge into their own freedom in Christ.
Let’s all do our best to take our new baby siblings under our wings so they will feel safe and secure in knowing they have a family to trust in times of uncertainty.
And if you are one of our new baby siblings, please reach out to us. Let someone know that you are new to faith in Jesus so we can help you on this new very exciting journey. The water’s warm and refreshing. Come on in! Let’s chat about it. I’d love to hear about your journey. What can I do to help? Post a comment on the website if you’d like.
Dear heavenly Father,
Please help those of us who have gone before our new brothers and sisters to be of help and encouragement as they begin to swim on their own. Give us words of hope and comfort when the waters get rough and someone to come to when insecurity sets in. Please be with those new to faith in Your Son and lead them to a brother or sister in faith to be of help and inspiration. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.
If you’d like new devotionals sent directly to you, feel free to subscribe for email updates each week. Only your email address is required.
Thank you for reading. I hope it has blessed you.
In His embrace,