When we talk about the fruit of the Spirit, we sometimes forget that these fruits are part of who God is. By being filled with the Spirit, we are being filled with God’s Holy Spirit. For some of you it is obvious, for others we some times need the dots connected for us to see the bigger picture.
So when we are told to Imitate God, we are being given the opportunity to be filled and connected to God on a deeper level. It is not just about us putting on a mask and trying to be someone that we are not, it is about allowing God to work in our hearts and minds and bodies, and souls, transforming us and conforming us. We are not trying to be shallow but allowing the deeper change in our lives so that we are finding a truer sense of who we are in God and with God.
We also have the example of Jesus. I am not belittling Jesus, Jesus is much more than just an example but in Jesus we can see the depth of God’s love for us. We see the strength of character that comes with being closer to Jesus, closer to God.
In the Ephesians 5 passage we looked at we also see Paul telling us what imitating the world around us looks like, when we choose those things from our culture that actually go against God and are contrary to being like God. One of the key things Paul is responding to in his culture and the people that he is speaking to is to say that just because the culture says it is okay and right, does not mean that it is right with God. God is not someone we create and form and transform, God is the one doing the forming and transforming. Some of us complain that I don’t know how to act. Others complain that God doesn’t allow us to be who we want to be. The irony that I have found is that some who complain that their are too many rules really don’t like it when people break their own rules, and even though the Bible does not lay down the word for word, and step for step actions that we are suppose to do, but God does show us where the boundaries are, even when we don’t like the boundaries. When we don’t know the boundaries we find ourselves struggling against life, when we know the boundaries we are able to live life to its fullest, however when we decide to break the boundaries we hinder our own lives and the lives of others. When we don’t follow the rules, we end up with a harder life, even though some think that life would be easier without those helpful freeing rules.