The term Christian literally means "follower of Christ." As His followers, it's important to ask ourselves what He would do and would have us do in each step of our life's journey.
As we seek His will, we can hold onto Hebrews 13:8, which states "Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today and forever."
This promise can become one of our greatest comforts and guides as we age and our circumstances change. We can take confidence when we choose to live out our faith that what He would do, and calls us to do, never changes.
If Jesus lived in an assisted living community — or rather, if He directs us to live in one — we can be assured that He would do two things in keeping with His nature.
1. Jesus would seek out others
"For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost." Luke 19:10 KJV
Wherever Jesus went, crowds followed. Despite these multitudes seeking him, in many instances it was Jesus who sought out an individual.
In the familiar story of Zacchaeus, we see a man so desperate to catch a glimpse of Jesus that he climbs a tree. His efforts are rewarded with an invitation to dine and speak with Jesus personally, and Zacchaeus is never the same.
In our own lives, we cross paths with people each day. Our community at Bethesda Gardens in Arlington, Texas, has residents, visitors and staff from all walks of life, and many of them are struggling or hurting in their own ways.
Some of them — like Zacchaeus — may take the first step in seeking us out, while others may withdraw and refuse to speak to us. This shouldn't stop us from reaching out with gentleness and compassion.
What we end up doing may only be a small gesture to show a friend who's tired out from a doctor visit that we care. But it may also be much deeper, such as sitting with someone facing the loss of a loved one or offering wisdom and encouragement to a neighbor going through hardship.
Jesus calls us to be the light of the world in His stead. This means keeping our hearts soft and ready to serve and our eyes open to the opportunities to show His love to those around us.
2. Jesus would seek the Father
"And it came to pass in those days, that He went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God." Luke 6:12 KJV
There are many reasons Jesus came, but ultimately His purpose was to supply a way for us to be with God. By providing us a sacrifice for the forgiveness of our sins, Jesus opens the door for us to reconnect with our Creator, but He didn't stop there. He shows us by example how to build a personal relationship with God through a life filled with prayer.
The Gospels record Jesus praying at His baptism (Luke 3:21), before breaking bread (John 6:11, Luke 22:19, Luke 24:30) as He rejoiced (Luke 10:21), at Gethsemane (Matthew 26:36-44) and on the cross (Luke 23:34, Luke 23:46).
In John 17:23, Jesus prays for His disciples: "I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me."
It is only by following in our Lord's footsteps and spending time with God in prayer that we can truly experience the love the Father has for us — and share that love with others in our assisted living community.