Let’s Pray To Be Like Jesus

GodReflection: Talking with God.

As I begin this post the prayer-song prominent from past decades in youth circles resurrects within my memory. To be like Jesus, To be like Jesus. My desire is to be like Him. All through life’s journey, from earth to glory, my desire is to be like Him.

We sang the group prayer as one participant after another would jump in to change the verb form to live like Jesus, to pray like Jesus, to love like Jesus, to serve like Jesus, etc. We would feel the words of petition vibrate from heart to heart around the room.

I suppose what stimulates anew this prayer in my mind is a recent six-day period of online memorial services to celebrate the fruitful lives of three servant saints whose impact on my life was greater than they could have possibly known. I found it easy to identify with person after person who stepped to the microphone to honor Willie, Lynn, and Charlie. Accurately, their descriptions were of Jesus-like shepherds with a combined two hundred seventy-four years to mirror Jesus’ grace and love.

Indeed, each participant’s words recalled qualities these men radiated in their classrooms, over the coffee table, and within their daily lives as they pastored, led, mentored, extended grace, and reflected love and light from Jesus. It was evident God long ago answered their prayer to be like Jesus.

Often, on such occasions, I think back to my dad’s New Mexico woodworking shop on the street corners of North Third Street and Texas. In the back of the rickety building was his wood lathe with all the carving tools nearby. I remember when people would need to replace a broken table leg, he could make a copy. With a piece of spinning wood and his tools, he would work up and down the turning object until all that was not table leg fell to the floor. When the wood lathe was turned off, he had a new table leg just like the original.

That was Jesus’s project with the lives of Willie, Lynn, and Charlie. As they prayed to be like Jesus, with the completion of their life’s walk on earth, Jesus had trimmed off all that was not Holy.

God’s family on earth is his children who grow each day to become more like the Holy. Our transformation takes place as we open Holy Scripture and listen to him speak to us, and as we express our words to him in holy conversation. But then he gives us a bonus. Within our churches are women and men who are ahead of us in their walk. They are those who we recognize with ease as authentic reflections of the grace, light, and love of Jesus. We find we can imitate them because they imitate Jesus. Among us are the Willies, Lynns, and Charlies we know by other names.

And, as we pray, To be like Jesus, To be like Jesus. My desire is to be like Him. All through life’s journey, from earth to glory, my desire is to be like Him, these saints we have in our midst are testimony that God will likewise answer our prayers.

Stay tuned.

Dr. Gary J. Sorrells

A GodReflection on Let’s Pray To Be Like Jesus.




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