Or “If you want to be a good man you have to hang-out with good men.”
Most of us have had the privilege of knowing and relating to someone we would call a really good man. Not just a gifted man but a good man. I have known of many highly gifted men, athletes or great intellects who I have had little respect for because they did not have good character. The image of a good man to me is one who is Christ-like. The best way to summarize the character of Christ is the term “selfless love.” He was a man who constantly, consistently manifest selfless love. When I meet men like that, who love their friends, their enemies, their coworkers and themselves this way I am impressed. I want to be such a man and hope that I already am in many ways.
My question for today is, how do we become good men? How do we gain the character, the skill, the love that turns normal guys in good men? I believe that the Bible gives us a clear and simple picture on this issue. (Hey, little secret, it works for women too!)
Ephesians 5:1-2 Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children 2 and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
The Biblical secret for character development is found in our relationships. In this passage Paul exhorts us to follow, or imitate God’s example in Christ Jesus. We are to walk in the way of His selfless love. What does that look like?
We gain true character changing skills only be receiving them from real people. We learn to love the way Christ love by hanging out with Jesus, His Spirit, and His people and experiencing it. Truth, character and skills are built up in us over time by practicing them, by seeing and experiencing them. I love how the priests react to the Apostles after arresting them after the healing at the Gate Beautiful. The priests are shocked by the power and boldness of Peter and John and recognize that “these men had been with Jesus.” After hanging out with Jesus they become changed men. After getting filled with His Spirit they become world changing men. The point is that by being more and more in the presence of the Person and the people that are full of His love the more we will be like that. Every time someone loves me, or shows me good character that is a learning experience that puts a new possibility for love into my heart. As I embrace the Lover I embrace His love and learn how to give it away.
Do you want to be a good man? (or woman? Hey it’s Father Day weekend ladies)
Get close to the best Man and His guys and get filled up with His love!