Living as an Example
I think one of the key questions we can ask ourselves is “what kind of example am I for others?” This question requires us to search the depths of who you are and when you do this; you must be willing to face the truth of what you find. It requires you to look at how you’re living your life. Is it a positive example for others to follow or are you living your life in a way that leads others astray.
As parents, one of the greatest things we can do for our children is to leave a positive example. In his letter to Timothy, Paul lists five areas in which we are to be an example: speech, conduct, love, faith, and purity (1Timothy 4:12). To live an exemplary life in these areas means to live your life as an example for others to follow, especially our children.
Speech is our words. Are you speaking encouraging and affirming words or are you speaking words that are shaming and provoking? “Let no corrupt talk come out of your mouth, but only such as is good for building up” (Ephesians 4:29).
Conduct is your actions. Are you living in a righteous way? “but as he who called you holy is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct” (1 Peter 1:15).
Love is our self-sacrificing service for others. “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13).
Faith is your faithfulness. “It is required of stewards that they be found trustworthy” (1 Corinthians 4:2).
Purity is your sexual purity and moral cleanness. This area is the one many struggle with. Pornography has become an epidemic in our society and has invaded many homes leaving many marriages and families on the brink of being torn apart. “An overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach” (1Timothy 3:2).
Truth be told, as much as I want to be successful in all of these areas of my life and be an example for others, especially my children to follow, I come up short daily. So, every morning I pray for God to be present in my life and help me successfully navigate these areas of my life because my desire is to be the man the God has called me to be to my wife, my children and the world around me.
So, self assessment time…How are you doing in these areas of your life? Are you pleased with the example you’re leaving for others? If you had to pick one area to improve upon, which one would it be? Are you willing to make the necessary changes in your life for that improvement?
"For nothing is impossible with God." - Luke 1:37