No one comes to me for advice on how to be a better Christian. Mostly because I’m not a Christian, better or otherwise.
But if I were to offer advice on the topic, I’d say most folk need to take a closer look at his life and teachings.
The first Christians were the rejects of society. They were petty criminals, folk with disabilities, poor, sick… It wasn’t like the nobility or wealthy merchants were queueing up to join this new religion.
Then the church enjoyed a couple thousand years of being the ones in power.
Jesus said to turn the other cheek, to not cast the first stone, to distrust folk who pray a little too hard in public.
Plenty of folk genuinely live by his teachings.
And plenty call themselves Christians while doing something he wouldn’t recognise.
Like I say, I’m not a Christian. Whether you think he’s the Son of God or simply an impressive human who inspired millions, there are lessons you can learn from his life.
You can learn how to treat your friends and how to treat your enemies.
What to do about wealth, betrayal, justice, your family – and a thousand other topics.
There’s wisdom in there.
You just might have to cut through the noise a little bit.
His teachings have become politicised and distorted over time. They’ve been used to justify opposite things – slavery and freedom, hatred and tolerance, arrogance and humility, empire building and letting people be.
This means is can be hard to find what you’re looking for.
A skilled teacher could guide you to it.
One with an agenda could lead you astray.
But the lessons on how to improve your life are there somewhere.
You could begin studying now and find things in minutes. Because, sure, there’s a lot of talk about what Jesus did and who he was. That doesn’t mean you won’t find something new – new for you, at least.
Your Christian friends might be the perfect folk to ask about this. They’ve probably spent a decent chunk of their lives thinking about this.
Or you might want to start elsewhere, to find someone less emotionally invested.
Either way, you’re looking for nuggets of wisdom.
Truths you can apply to your life.
New ways of seeing things.
Not all of it applies to today and not all will resonate with you.
But some will – a new idea, or a new take on an old one.
Often, that’s all you need to start thinking and living in a better way.
So that’s one way to enhance your life.
But if self-improvement really interests you, what would you do with more techniques than you can use?
Like, say, 60 of them?
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