Imitate What Is Good

by Kimberly B. Southall

Have you ever done something you've seen someone else do? This is what it means to imitate. The Bible tells us to be careful about what we imitate, though:

Dear friends, do not imitate what is evil but what is good. Anyone who does what is good is from God. Anyone who does what is evil has not seen God. --3 John 1:11 (NIV)

We must think carefully before we imitate the actions of others. Is what they are doing good or evil? Let's look at some examples. Is one of your friends getting good grades by cheating? Good grades are good, but cheating is evil. Don't imitate the cheating. Does someone you know get a bigger allowance than you do, even though he bosses his parents around? The allowance might be good, but the disrespect for parents is evil. Don't imitate and be disrespectful toward your parents. Do you know someone who is really smart who always criticizes others? Intelligence is usually good, but being nasty to others is evil. Don't imitate and treat others badly. Those are just a few examples of how we must be careful not to imitate evil actions, even though they might accompany good things.

The Bible contains accounts of people who did good things, even though they weren't perfect. We can imitate the good things they did, including being faithful to God, praying, sharing, and caring. The best One to imitate, though, is Jesus. He was always good, and He still is. Jesus is perfect, so we'll never go wrong by imitating Him.

Remember to think before you do what you've seen others do. Imitate what is good.

Copyright © Kimberly B. Southall. All rights reserved.