I love Mary Poppins but Burt’s accent is a thing of less than loveliness! It is a thing to behold, maybe even to be admired in its terribleness but it is not a thing that is lovely!
I have been reminded of Mary Poppins frequently recently as, along with the needing to just say anything, our Thea also seems to feel the need to talk in different accents. Unfortunately, this is not one of her areas of expertise! It’s very funny, although not meant to be. She keeps insisting that she can do my accent but, despite having lived with me all her life, she still really can’t!!
Anyhoos, all this imitating got me thinking about how God wants us to imitate Him.
We don’t know what Jesus looked like, what he talked like; what accent did he have? How did he walk? Did he always use his hands when he talked? Did he have a stammer? All those physical things that often get copied when people try to imitate others.
But those things don’t matter in this instance.
What we do know quite a lot about is how Jesus lived. We know the things he said. We know how he treated others. We know how he valued spending time alone with God.
More years ago than I’d like it to be, WWJD became a really popular thing. Christians all over the place started wearing wrist bands, t-shirts, hoodies with it on. It was quite the craze. And it was well-intentioned but….
….. as John Froud himself said, should you really have to stop to ask yourself the question?
The more time we spend with God, the more we read about Jesus, the more we grow our relationship, the more we will naturally become like Him. Thea may spend a lot of time with me and still not be able to do a good imitation of my accent, but true imitation is more than copying someone’s accent. It’s also about our motivation behind our actions. As we grow more like Jesus, hopefully our lives will reflect Him more in our interactions with others, in our words.
In all that we do, we are to display the love of Jesus. It is this love that enables all our actions to be true imitations of Jesus. “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love” (John 15:9). He also said, “As I have loved you, so you must love one another” (John 13:34).
A song for you to listen to before you go about your days:
Go, be imitators, and do as many terrible accents as you like for the amusement of others!!!