Looking Up to Jesus, Not Looking Down on Others

Something stood out to me in the March 4, 2014 Daily Bread devotional: “Looking up to Jesus prevents us from looking down on others.”

I can identify with this: rather than nitpicking others, why not look up to Jesus?

There are versions of Christianity that focus a lot on relationships with people: fellowship, accountability, being brothers and sisters, etc.  I, however, tend to gravitate to the versions that try to tell us how to cope with people, since I often do not fit in, and I tend to take people’s inventory for them.

I read Van Moody’s The People Factor, and one point of his that I appreciated was that we work for God, not for human beings.  Moody is drawing here from Colossians 3:23, where the author exhorts slaves to obey their masters.  Maybe the verse has a shady background and historical application, but I can still identify with the concept of seeking to please one, God.  Other people will not necessarily appreciate what I do, but I have to believe that God does.

Of course, I wouldn’t want for others to be nice to me just because they are seeking to please God; I would want for them to be nice to me because they like me.  But who am I to judge?  Maybe I should go back to square one: look up to Jesus, so that I am not looking down on others, evaluating their motives, real and imagined.

About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
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