Who do you follow?

In different areas of our life, we find ourselves looking-up to certain people. Either because they are a representation of whom we want to be or where we want to get to. At other times, it simply because we just admire them. We find ourselves emulating their works, attitudes and just trying to be like them.
The issue is not having a role model; the issue is the criteria with which we select them. I’m sure we’ve found ourselves in situations whereby we find ourselves looking-up to a person, not because we genuinely like them, but because they’ve been forced on us by the world and in our bid to fit-it or be accepted, we accept them into our lives.
As Christians, this is a very dangerous path to thread because the bible specifically states that we are not of the world, even though we are in the world (John 15:19). We are lights in the world, to show others the way (Matthew 5:14) and not to try to fit-in, cos by nature (the new nature of Christ which we now have [2Peter 1:4]), we’ve been designed to stand-out.
Now, even in the Christian circles, we have role models in the likes of Pastors, teachers, musicians and even friends. Again, is this an issue? No, but it becomes an issue when we begin to use them as a benchmark for our personal relationship with God. By virtue of the word ‘personal’, it gives one the idea that the relationship is intimate, but one many people become involved (e.g. our role models), it begins to lose its meaning.
In Philippians 2:12, Paul instructs us to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling. Simply put, we should safeguard our relationship with God and give make no provision for the devil who is constantly walking about, seeking whom to devour (1Peter 5:8).
“And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.” (Matthew 24:11-12). This particular scripture tells us why we need to be vigilant. For instance, if we measure of relationship with God through the judgment of our role models, through their idea of what’s right and what’s wrong; if their love for God happens to grow cold (we don’t wish for this, which is why we should pray tirelessly for them),it is almost inevitable that we fall with them.

We need to understand that backsliding doesn’t just happen, its gradual. You know, when we begin to see formerly unacceptable things that people do as acceptable, then we find ourselves doing those very things, then gradually, our conscience no longer pricks us when we do them. That’s backsliding for you; it comes in through the backdoor, and then gradually makes its way through, being careful never to come on too strong.
We need to know God by ourselves and not through the eyes of someone else cos their vision might be blurred or even too advanced for us. We should to follow Christ, not men.

Watch out for the second side to this coin- ‘What examples do you give?’

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