The phrase "What would Jesus do?", abbreviated to WWJD, was wildly popular in the 1990s. WWJD was on everything from necklaces to bumper stickers. You were really cool if you had it tattooed somewhere. It was a personal motto for Evangelical Christians who used the phrase as a reminder to act in a manner that would demonstrate the love of Jesus.
It was so popular that I think everyone got burned out on WWJD and the abbreviation failed to signify anything important.
The concept is still true and necessary. What would Jesus do? If we claim to follow Christ, our actions should mirror his. I remembered this as I was sitting in the drive-thru waiting a ridiculously long time for icecream.
You might be thinking that Jesus would never go to a fast-food joint because of the unhealthy eating options. But he ate with tax collectors and sinners (Mark 2:13-17). I'm going to stretch that to say Jesus would go with me to the Dairy Queen after a hard day of work. My treat, of course.
So, there I sat in my mini-van with kids screaming in the backseat and I was really annoyed that it was taking so long. "Why is it taking so long?!! These incompetent prepubescents! Apparently they are the last people on earth to hear of the rising gas prices and the money that is just IDLING away right now," was going through my mind. I know I didn't have the most pleasant look on my face. I know it for certain because one of the employees glanced out the window at me and visibly drew back with a shudder. I scared the poor girl half to death. My face reflected the anger and impatience of the world and a hard day that didn't go as I planned.
Jesus was nowhere to be found. Shame washed over me. What would Jesus do? I have failed so much I wouldn't even know.
"For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." (Romans 3:23)
But read on.... there is hope.
"...and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus." (Romans 3:24)
By his grace I have another chance. When I fail badly at representing Christ, I can try again. What a gift! I don't deserve it. But I was humbled in that drive-thru line and I prayed for a different perspective on life's normal frustrations.
She was probably more baffled with my major mood change than my reflection of Jesus.
What would Jesus do? He would continue to show love (John 1:1-14). He would continue to show compassion (Luke 7:13). He would continue to serve (Philippians 2:5-11). My testimony of Christ is far from perfect, but still he chose me to represent him. He. Chose. Me. And he chose you too! He delights in our attempts and our desire to follow him.
"Then he said to them all:
'Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves
and take up their cross daily and follow me.'"
[photos courtesy of the make-up-less, Christ follower, sometimes stumbling, author of this post]