Can Others Bring Me Closer to Christ?

By Seth D.

I am far from perfect, as anyone who has ever lived with me can certainly attest to. I have patience for my bosses and colleagues, but I get easily frustrated helping my children with their math homework. My own shortcomings frustrate me but I find that by seeking a relationship with God, I am aware of how I can be better, bit by bit.

No one on Earth is perfect, but I’m drawn to people who I see living virtuous, moral lives. I want to be better and I seek out help from people I admire to help me become a more Christ-like person. Some people are clearly inspirational and I can easily see in their lives some virtues, qualities and attributes that they have that I need in my life. As I like to see it, they have a bit of Christ that I need to enrich my life.

Recently I had an opportunity to learn more from a friend whom many see as someone who needs help from others, but few realize what they can learn from him. As I tried to humbly find that bit of Christ in him, I found that while serving him, he was actually serving me and enriching my life. We went on an excursion together and it became a spiritual journey as much as a tangible trek. In his specially-designed bicycle for those in wheelchairs, we enjoyed the local rivers and forest. His child-like fascination with the tunnels led us to stop and sing in them—not for any beautiful music, but simply for the joy of hearing things in a new way. On the trail, everyone’s countenance brightened when this man greeted fellow travelers and we all saw each other is a different light. I was happier being who I was—his brother and friend on the path of life. The experience with my special friend helped me draw closer to Christ, and hopefully, I served him in the same way.

I’ve been thinking about what the purpose of life is and how my personal goals need to be part of something bigger than simply earning a living. The more I look at other people’s lives and try to honestly examine my own, I more I realize that everyone has a little bit of Christ that I need. As I relate with the people, I admire them for their Christ-like tendencies; it lightens my soul and brings peace to my life. I am happiest when I actively search for the good in other people; I try to learn from their example and to be that example for others as well.

Society as a whole often dismisses certain people. Our media obsesses over the strongest, the smartest and the most beautiful; the way of Christ is to embrace the weak, the lesser, and the outcast. One thing that the gospel of Jesus Christ has taught me is that everyone has an element of divinity within them, whether they know it or not, or whether I see it or not. Simply because we are God’s children – we have that element. We do others a disservice denying their divinity and, in some strange way, if we don’t acknowledge that everyone has that spiritual potential, we are devaluing our own spiritual heritage.

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