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Transformed by Christ to love like Christ

A devotion for Advent

This devotion appears in the 2022 Buckner Advent Guide, containing devotions and family activities to help you celebrate the Advent season. Get your free digital copy of the Advent Guide delivered instantly to your email today.

“For the love of Christ controls us, since we have concluded this, that Christ died for all; therefore all have died. And he died for all so that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised.” – 2 Corinthians 5:14-15
As a child of the ‘90s, I grew up when every “Christian kid" wore a WWJD bracelet. Back then, my problems seemed simple, and this simple question often made the answer simple.

Twenty years later, my world is more complex, but that question remains simple. These days, I engage with schools to prisons, human trafficking to health care, refugees to homelessness, abortion to foster care. Life's problems feel heavier, more consequential, and I often feel insecure and under-qualified. What Would Jesus Do? 

Jesus continually invests great love in me. His love for me reconciles me to a Father who wants far more for my life than I'll ever know on this side of heaven. He breaks the chains of sin, provides an escape from temptation, and renews my mind to hope in him. And as if that redemption is not sweet enough, he calls me to enter his pursuit of all people by inviting me to reinvest that same love he’s shown me to others. 

“Love one another, as I have loved you.” – John 15:12

Loving like that can feel expansive, hard to define, difficult to achieve. However, when I consider the person God has placed before me, the question remains: WWJD? This week, it looked like inviting a homeless man inside to use the restroom, cool down, wash his face and take a drink of water. Not just offering a dollar, but instead connecting him to a jobs program and offering him a ride to a ministry partner ready to meet his needs. 

For me, being transformed by Christ to love like Christ means meeting people where they are, and if they’re open to it, walking alongside them in the immediate next steps. After all, isn’t that What Jesus Would Do?

Written by Zac Whitley, director of city engagement at Watermark Community Church in Dallas, Texas. Passionate about inspiring and inviting individuals to use their God-given gifts, Zac equips, connects and mobilizes the church to transform the community.

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