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I’ve always been intrigued by the concept of “What Would Jesus Do?” and how we can apply it to our everyday lives. It’s not just a catchy phrase or a bumper sticker slogan; it’s a way of living with intention and aligning our actions with the teachings of Jesus Christ. In this article, I’ll explore some practical scenarios where we can put this mantra into practice and discuss how it can positively impact our relationships, decisions, and overall well-being. So, let’s take a moment to reflect on how we can navigate the complexities of life by asking ourselves, “What Would Jesus Do?”

Practicing What Would Jesus Do? In Everyday Situations

Understanding the Philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’

The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ has become a popular mantra in contemporary society, emphasizing the importance of making ethical and moral choices in our daily lives. Originating from the novel “In His Steps” by Charles M. Sheldon, this phrase has transcended its literary roots and become a guiding principle for many who seek to live a Christ-centered life.

Origin of the mantra

The mantra “What Would Jesus Do?” gained its popularity in the late 19th century through Charles M. Sheldon’s novel, “In His Steps.” This fictional story revolved around a group of individuals who pledged to ask themselves this question before making any decision. The profound impact of this concept resonated with readers, leading to the widespread adoption of this phrase as a guiding principle in their own lives. Since then, the mantra has been embraced by many Christians and has transcended cultural and denominational boundaries.

Biblical basis and influence

As Christians, the teachings and example of Jesus Christ serve as a foundation for our moral and ethical compass. The Bible provides numerous instances where Jesus demonstrated a selfless and compassionate approach to life, serving as a role model for his followers. The principle of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ finds its basis in Jesus’ commandment to love one another and to live a life that reflects God’s character and teachings. By following this mantra, we strive to emulate Jesus’ love, compassion, and selflessness in our own actions and decisions.

Impact on character and morality

Embracing the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ has a profound impact on our character and morality. By consistently asking ourselves this question, we develop a heightened sense of self-awareness and accountability for our choices. It challenges us to align our behavior with Christ-like virtues such as humility, love, forgiveness, and integrity. This constant introspection helps us grow in character and cultivates a deep desire to live in accordance with God’s will.

How it can guide daily decisions

In our daily lives, we are faced with countless decisions, ranging from simple choices to life-altering ones. Adopting the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ helps guide us in making choices that align with our values and beliefs. When confronted with a decision, taking a moment to contemplate what Jesus would do in a similar situation can provide us with much-needed clarity and guidance. It prompts us to consider the potential impact of our actions on ourselves and those around us, enabling us to make choices rooted in love, compassion, and righteousness.

Implementation at Home

Fostering patience and understanding

Implementing the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ at home begins with fostering patience and understanding in our relationships. Jesus consistently exhibited patience and compassion towards others, even in the face of adversity. By emulating his behavior, we can create an environment of love and respect within our families. When conflicts arise, we can take a step back, reflect on Jesus’ teachings, and respond with empathy and understanding.

Maintaining honesty and integrity

Honesty and integrity are foundational virtues that Jesus emphasized in his teachings. By practicing these values, we uphold Jesus’ example and cultivate trust within our families. When faced with the temptation to deceive or withhold the truth, we can ask ourselves, “What Would Jesus Do?” This reflection reminds us to be truthful in all situations, even when it may be challenging or uncomfortable.

Practicing love and forgiveness

Love and forgiveness are central themes in the teachings of Jesus. By embodying these principles, we can nurture healthy and thriving relationships at home. When conflicts arise, we can choose to respond with love rather than anger. Forgiveness, as exemplified by Jesus, helps facilitate healing and reconciliation. As we seek to love and forgive as Jesus did, we create a loving and harmonious atmosphere within our families.

Promoting peace and harmony

Jesus’ ministry was characterized by a commitment to peace and harmony, even in the midst of turmoil. By prioritizing peace within our homes, we can create a safe and nurturing environment for our loved ones. This involves resolving conflicts amicably, practicing effective communication, and fostering an atmosphere of respect and understanding. Embracing the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ reminds us to choose actions that promote peace and harmony in our homes.

Practicing What Would Jesus Do? In Everyday Situations

Practicing in Professional Life

Striking a balance between ambition and ethics

In our professional lives, it is essential to find a balance between our ambitions and ethical principles. The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ guides us to pursue our goals and aspirations with integrity and morality. When faced with ethical dilemmas in the workplace, we can use Jesus’ teachings as a compass to guide our actions. By prioritizing ethical standards over personal gain, we make choices that honor God and benefit those around us.

Elevating others rather than self-promotion

Jesus consistently demonstrated humility and selflessness in his interactions with others. This serves as a powerful example for us to follow in our professional lives. Instead of prioritizing self-promotion, we can ask ourselves, “What Would Jesus Do?” and seek opportunities to uplift and support our colleagues and subordinates. By fostering an environment of collaboration and encouragement, we contribute to a positive work culture that benefits everyone involved.

Prompting fairness in dealing with colleagues and subordinates

Fairness and impartiality were attributes consistently exhibited by Jesus. As we implement the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ in our professional lives, we can ensure that we treat our colleagues and subordinates with fairness and respect. By embracing impartiality in decision-making processes, valuing diverse perspectives, and providing equal opportunities, we create an inclusive and harmonious work environment.

Bringing empathy and compassion in the work environment

Jesus’ ministry was characterized by empathy and compassion towards those he encountered. In our professional lives, we can emulate this compassion by genuinely caring for the well-being of our colleagues and clients. By actively listening and seeking to understand their needs, we create an atmosphere of support and understanding. As we strive to be empathetic and compassionate, we reflect Jesus’ love and serve as positive influences in our work environments.

Guidance in Financial Decisions

The principle of stewardship and generosity

The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ also extends to our financial decisions. Jesus spoke extensively on the topic of stewardship, emphasizing the responsible management of resources and the importance of generosity. By considering what Jesus would do in our financial choices, we can practice wise stewardship by managing our finances responsibly and generously contributing to the needs of others. This includes giving to charitable causes, supporting those less fortunate, and living within our means.

Avoidance of greed and materialism

Greed and materialism are challenges that many individuals face in our consumer-driven society. By embracing the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ we can resist the allure of material possessions and prioritize more meaningful pursuits. Jesus’ teachings highlight the transient nature of material wealth and the importance of focusing on eternal values. By avoiding greed and materialism, we can find contentment and live a life aligned with Jesus’ teachings.

Making ethical investments

When making investment decisions, the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ prompts us to consider the ethical implications of our choices. Jesus emphasized the importance of integrity and treating others justly. By avoiding investments in companies or practices that are contrary to our Christian values, we ensure that our financial decisions align with our beliefs. This includes favoring companies that prioritize sustainability, social responsibility, and ethical business practices.

Practicing What Would Jesus Do? In Everyday Situations

Applying in Interpersonal Relationships

Respecting others

Respect for others is a fundamental principle that Jesus consistently exemplified. By practicing the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’, we can ensure that our interactions with others are rooted in respect and dignity. This involves valuing diverse perspectives, listening actively, and treating others with kindness and empathy. By upholding the dignity of every individual, we reflect Jesus’ love and foster healthy and harmonious relationships.

Forgiving and letting go of grudges

Jesus’ teachings on forgiveness serve as a powerful example for us in our interpersonal relationships. The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ encourages us to forgive those who have wronged us and let go of grudges. Forgiveness liberates us from the burden of resentment and promotes healing and reconciliation. By choosing forgiveness, we reflect Jesus’ unconditional love and foster growth and restoration in our relationships.

Promoting love and unity

Central to Jesus’ teachings is the commandment to love one another. Applying the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ prompts us to prioritize love and unity in our relationships. By actively demonstrating love, kindness, and compassion, we foster an environment of acceptance and inclusivity. This involves actively seeking opportunities to serve others, engaging in acts of kindness, and promoting a culture of love and unity.

Health and Lifestyle Choices

Maintaining a healthy body as a temple of God

Our bodies are gifts from God, and we are called to be good stewards of this gift. The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ reminds us to prioritize our health and well-being. By adopting healthy lifestyle choices, such as exercising regularly, eating nutritious foods, and getting adequate rest, we honor God’s gift and ensure that we can fulfill our purpose to the best of our abilities.

Adopting modest and respectful attire

Modesty and respect for oneself and others are values embodied by Jesus. By considering what Jesus would do in our choices of attire, we can ensure that our clothing reflects these values. Modesty promotes humility, respect, and purity of heart. Applying this principle not only demonstrates our commitment to living with integrity but also fosters a culture of dignity and respect in our interactions with others.

Avoiding substance abuse

The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ encourages us to make choices that preserve our well-being. This includes avoiding substance abuse and addictive behaviors that can harm ourselves and others. By reflecting on Jesus’ teachings and the example he set, we can prioritize our physical and mental health. This involves making responsible choices regarding the use of substances and seeking healthier alternatives for coping with life’s challenges.

Navigating Social Issues

Stand on social justice and inequality

Jesus’ ministry was characterized by his advocacy for social justice and equality. The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ compels us to take a stand against injustice and work towards a more equitable society. By addressing issues such as poverty, discrimination, and inequality, we serve as catalysts for positive change. This involves advocating for policies and initiatives that prioritize the well-being and dignity of all individuals, just as Jesus did during his time on earth.

Inspiring individuals to be change-makers

As followers of Jesus, we are called to be change-makers in the world. By practicing the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ we inspire others to do the same. Through our actions, words, and attitudes, we can motivate individuals around us to emulate Jesus’ love and compassion. By being living examples of Christ’s teachings, we encourage others to take steps towards positive transformation in themselves and in society.

Showing compassion towards the less fortunate

Jesus’ ministry was marked by his compassion and care for the less fortunate. The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ reminds us of our responsibility to show compassion towards those in need. By actively seeking opportunities to help the poor, the marginalized, and the oppressed, we manifest Jesus’ love in our actions. This involves engaging in charitable acts, supporting organizations that alleviate suffering, and extending a helping hand to those who are less fortunate.

Encountering Tough Decisions

Relying on spiritual wisdom than earthly wisdom

When faced with tough decisions, the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ encourages us to rely on spiritual wisdom rather than earthly wisdom. Jesus’ teachings provide us with insights and guidance that go beyond conventional wisdom. By seeking God’s guidance through prayer and reflection, we tap into a source of wisdom and discernment that surpasses our own understanding. In difficult situations, leaning on spiritual wisdom can help us make decisions that align with God’s will.

Cultivating faith in times of trials

Trials and challenges are inevitable in life, but how we respond to them is within our control. The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ reminds us to cultivate faith in times of trials. Jesus faced numerous challenges during his earthly ministry but demonstrated unwavering faith in God’s plan. By drawing strength from Jesus’ example and relying on our own faith, we can navigate difficult times with resilience, trust, and hope.

Finding serenity in surrender

Surrendering to God’s will is a key principle in the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ When confronted with challenging decisions, we can find serenity in surrendering our own desires and trusting in God’s plan. Jesus, in his moments of greatest difficulty, demonstrated surrender to God’s will, ultimately leading to triumph. By surrendering our will to God’s, we open ourselves up to his guidance, peace, and the assurance that he is in control.

Role in Personal Development

Building character and virtues

Personal development and growth are essential aspects of the Christian journey. The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ plays a significant role in shaping our character and virtue. By consciously aligning our thoughts, words, and actions with Jesus’ teachings, we cultivate virtues such as humility, kindness, patience, and selflessness. Through our commitment to living according to these values, we continually evolve into individuals who reflect the likeness of Jesus.

Promoting selfless service

Jesus’ life was marked by his selfless service to others. The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ inspires us to follow his example and engage in selfless acts of service. By considering the needs of others before our own, we demonstrate love and compassion. This can involve volunteering our time and resources, extending a helping hand to those in need, and actively seeking opportunities to make a positive impact in our communities.

Growth through trials and tribulations

Trials and tribulations are part of the human experience, but they also offer opportunities for growth and transformation. The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ encourages us to view challenges as stepping stones towards personal development. By adopting a mindset of resilience and trust, we can navigate difficulties with grace and allow these experiences to shape and refine our character. Through trials and tribulations, we grow stronger and develop a deeper dependence on God.

Maintaining the Approach During Tough Times

Staying hopeful and faithful

In times of adversity and hardship, it can be challenging to maintain hope and faith. However, the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ encourages us to cling to hope and remain faithful. Jesus endured great suffering but triumphed through his resurrection, offering us a source of hope and reassurance. By drawing on this hope and remaining steadfast in our faith, we can navigate tough times with resilience and trust in God’s plan.

Finding comfort and solace in His presence

Seeking comfort and solace in God’s presence is a vital aspect of maintaining the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ during tough times. By turning to prayer, meditation, and Scripture, we find solace and strength in God’s words and promises. Like Jesus, who sought solitude and communion with God during his trials, we can find comfort and guidance by immersing ourselves in his presence.

Guiding others through their struggles

As followers of Jesus, we are called to support and guide others through their struggles. The philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ prompts us to extend a helping hand to those in need, offering comfort, encouragement, and guidance. By demonstrating empathy, understanding, and a genuine desire to assist, we reflect Jesus’ love and light in the lives of others. Even in our own challenges, we can find strength in reaching out to help and serve those around us.

In conclusion, the philosophy of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ encompasses various aspects of life, providing guidance and inspiration in our daily decisions and actions. By reflecting on Jesus’ teachings and emulating his character, we strive to live a life that exemplifies love, compassion, and righteousness. Whether at home, in our professional lives, financial decisions, interpersonal relationships, or in times of trials, the principles of ‘What Would Jesus Do?’ serve as a compass, guiding us towards a life that honors God and impacts positively the world around us.