I have two questions for you? The second we’ll get to later. The first is: what are your core values? How would you describe them in action in your life?
With a foot in the secular life coaching world and another in the ministry of Jesus, I hold some unique perspectives. The more I work with people, we invariably touch upon their core values and how these values shape their feelings, thoughts, and behaviors. If you’d ask me what my top five core values are, I’d have to say service, leadership, authenticity, love, and obedience.
You might say, “Sounds like a good list,” and you’d leave it at that. Afterall, these are my core values. You’re likely more interested in exploring your core values. I say, “Do it,” and encourage you to describe what your core values look like through the worldview of Jesus. My second question: how did Jesus embody your core values as he lived his short life on earth?
You are uniquely made by God, and He instilled a unique combination of core values that are rooted deep inside you. Think of an apple with its core full of seeds. The skin and flesh of the apple is you, and the seeds at the center are your core values. Your life sprouts and grows out of your core values.
I can see the beauty and appreciate my core values even more, when I see how Jesus lived them out as described through the Bible.
- Service: Jesus was the ultimate servant by healing the sick, feeding the masses, and bringing the dead to life. During the last supper and their protests, Jesus washed the feet of his disciples, even Judas, whom He knew would betray him.
- Leadership: The only litmus test of a leader is whether he has followers. The Bible is full of stories where the crowds flocked to Jesus, yet ultimately his leadership is revealed in his ability to convince a small tribe, his 12 disciples, to give up their lives to follow him and become fishers of men.
- Authenticity: Jesus was the poster child who exemplified authenticity. How many times did he unabashedly tell stories and speak truth that countered the prevailing thoughts of the Jewish culture and Pharisee leaders? He always spoke truth regardless of its repercussions or how it fit in with conventional culture.
- Love: Jesus embodied love with encouragement, discipline, and teaching. He knew everyone’s heart and still accepted them. Jesus had the longest recorded one-on-one conversation recorded by the Gospel writers with the Samaritan woman at the well. Who was she? The lowest ethnic and gender class shunned by her community for immoral sexual behavior. Jesus loves when others don’t or won’t.
- Obedience: Jesus embodied obedience when he knowingly sacrificed himself on the cross for humanity’s sin and for our salvation. That was the ultimate act of obedience to God’s plan. Amen!
What is your favorite Scripture that embodies your core values? Here are mine:
- Service: John 15:12: This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
- Leadership: 1 Peter 5:3: Not domineering over those in your charge but being example to the flock.
- Authenticity: Ephesians 4:15: Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.
- Love: Galatians 5:14: For the whole law is fulfilled in the statement: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
- Obedience: 1 John 2:6: And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love.
My prayer is that you’ll spend time identifying your top core values and thinking how Jesus embodied them. Through this self-reflection, you’ll hopefully realize how much you and Jesus have in common.
About the Author: Sandra Dillon is a professional life coach with an extensive background in leadership and ministry. She has a passion to help people be the hero of their own life stories. She administers assessments, designs and facilitates workshops, and coaches individuals, teams, and businesses. You can learn more about Sandra or engage her as your coach by reaching out to her at firstname.lastname@example.org or by visiting her website at www.shinecrossings.com