Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. '
On a cold September morning, on the high street in Manchester, I started a conversation with a student about Jesus. I introduced this Jesus as the saviour of the world, the one who redeems us, sets us free from our own efforts and liberates us into a life of service to God and people. It sounded good but didn’t land with this student. He looked blankly back at me as to communicate ‘this isn’t relevant to me, why is this smiley enthusiastic person telling me this information?’. Whilst feeling disappointed that this student didn’t understand, it dawned on me again how beautiful and wonderful Jesus is. So I continued to share, telling stories of how Jesus turned my life around setting me free from sin and addiction, that this love was for the whole world. It still didn’t land or impact the student but I emptied myself, I had no words left. Because of God’s love, it was easy to empty myself. The conversation ended. The student did listen but just looked at me blankly, like he was doing me a favour. We went our separate ways.
After the conversation, I was struck at how Jesus emptied himself at the cross. As he hung on a tree, he looked out at masses of people ridiculing him, shaming and mocking him, some must have just looked blankly (like the student) thinking to themselves ‘this is another man who tried standing for a good cause’. YET Jesus continued to empty himself for the sake of redeeming the world.
This scripture states we have the mind of Christ. Today, Christmas day, let’s revisit the cross and remember Jesus. This wonderful and beautiful God-man born of a woman who emptied himself to the point of death. Like me and you, fully giving himself for the sake of others. Let this passage sink into your life and know today you have the mind of Christ. So for the sake of those around you, how can you empty yourself?