I sat watching the group of children carefully threading bracelets they hoped to sell to raise money for their Children’s Church project. The price: one dollar per bracelet. If they split the task between them and made enough they would be able to buy the new instrument they wanted, or raise a donation to give to a local charity. The last thing each of them did was sew four letters of the alphabet across the fabric. W, W, J, D.... “What Would Jesus Do?”

The leader of the group explained to me that the intention was that wearers occasionally look at their bracelets and be reminded that the goal of Christian living is to be like Jesus. Not as a duty, slavishly adhering to a prescribed format, but willingly, because He triumphed and our faith and relationship with Him “work”. We are called to reflect the person and will of Father God by living each day aware of His presence. His purpose is that, listening to and empowered by the Holy Spirit, we will make decisions on the basis of what He would do, faced with similar situations, whether in terms of personal epistemology, local culture, church life, dealing with the great issues of life, or making plans for the future, twenty centuries after the birth of Jesus. The Christian life is eminently practical.

It has been my privilege and joy, over many years, to experience dozens of cultures around the world, through secular work, Christian ministry, oversight of a missions region for my denomination and as a private traveller. My wife, Anita, and I have pastored full-time. We have served our Government on an international basis, with unique doors opened up to us. We have met Christian friends in different countries and seen the proverbial “good, bad and ugly” of the institutional face of “the church” in the modern world. Some of it has made us cringe. Some has filled us with joy, as we have seen communities revolutionized and energized by the Holy Spirit in the witness of ordinary people who managed to cut through fogs of tradition and experience Jesus as a reality in their midst.

Whatever your background, wherever you live, if you are a Christian believer, He is living in your heart. He wants you to know him intimately, to listen to His voice and to walk according to His Word. He wants to teach you “how” to live. Jesus didn’t struggle to make His message relevant. He simply lived it. “What Would Jesus Do?” isn’t a cliche, a formula or a law. It is an expression of life.

The following pages were originally written as a series of articles and Home Group topics around the broad theme of “Relevant Christian Living”. The list is far from exhaustive. There are lots of anecdotes about things I have seen, that have made me think about how we can “be” Christ to our generation, in language and actions that non-Christians understand, so that they too can be drawn to love God and Serve His Son with the enabling of His Spirit,. I hope I have adequately dispensed with anachronisms and complications, so that even children can understand. Let’s be profound but simple and see lives changed for God’s glory.

Challenge you thinking. “What Would Jesus Do?” Through His people, He would “be” light, life and hope in the world. His message is good for every age and culture. I pray the examples I have chosen from life will help you come to the same conclusion.


Section OverviewArticle List