TAKING AFTER JESUS

Following Israel’s idolatrous episode of the golden calf, Moses ascends Mount Sinai a second time.  There on the windswept mountain, the Lord gives Moses a glimpse of His glory.

When Moses comes down from the mountain, there is something different about him.  His face is radiant. He unconsciously radiates the reflected glory He has seen

In regard to the apostles, the book of Acts tells us that the Jewish leaders “took note that these men had been with Jesus.”   

Christian writer Edith Schaeffer wrote:  “When I was a little girl, my mother would often say to me, ‘Edith, I know just who you’ve been playing with today.”  She knew because I had become something like the other little girl, whichever one it was, enough like her that the girl could be identified by my changed accent, my mannerisms and other telltale changes.”   

For better or worse, we become like those with whom we keep company.  “Do not be deceived,” said Paul, “bad company corrupts good character.”  

Or in more graphic terms, the prophet Hosea said that the idol worshipping Israelites of his day “became as vile as the thing they loved.”  

For better or worse, we become as vile or as beautiful as that which we love.  So what do we love? Sarcastic sitcoms and soft porn? Godless friends or too much Jack Daniels?   The altar of a career or sports on which we sacrifice spouse, children and church attendance? We reflect what we love.  

Or we become like the One who has loved us.  Are you weary and worn out from endless attempts to cure isolated sins, from striving after little pieces of goodness that elude your grasp?  Keep company with Christ. Listen to Christ. Pick up His accents, His mannerisms. Absorb His love for you, His blood-bought pardon.

He will transform you. You will become like the One who has loved you with an everlasting love. More and more you will become like the one you now love.  You will “take after” Jesus. The image of God once lost when the world was young, will begin to appear again through faith in the Savior.

Others will see this. They will be helped by it.  They may even ask you about this reflection they see in your life.   And then, in humble and simple words, you can tell them just “who you have been playing with today.”  

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Rev. Roy W. Hefti

About Rev. Roy W. Hefti

Pastor Hefti grew up on the North side of LaCrosse. He is a 1971 graduate of Luther High School. He then attended Northwestern College in Watertown, WI. After graduation, he went on to attend Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary in Mequon, WI. He graduated the Seminary in 1979 and accepted his first call to start a mission congregation in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. In May 1984, Pastor Hefti received and accepted the call to be the Pastor of St. Paul’s. Pastor, his wife Alice and 3 children moved to Bangor in July of 1984. The Lord blessed the Heftis with 3 more children while living in Bangor. Their 6 children are now grown and are living around the world. In addition to his pastoral duties, Pastor Hefti teaches 7th-8th grade confirmation classes and also teaches a rotating class of “A Touch of Latin” or “A Touch of German” to familiarize the children with a foreign language. Each morning, Pastor conducts a Bible study with the faculty and he also conducts a weekly mission devotion with the whole school.