We come to the third of our articles on people who commanded attention. In the first one we considered what people say. In the second we looked at what they did or the difference they made.
In this article we shall consider the moral and ethical foundations of the lives of such individuals; the core values that made them to command attention.
As we looked through the pages of history we see a roll call of people whose lives stand out because of what they believed and lived out. These individuals made huge choices, often to their hurt, maintaining their stand and paying the ultimate price with their lives. They did so because of their convictions and beliefs about how life ought to be lived. Several modern examples come to mind; for example, Mahatma Ghandi and Dr Martin Luther King Jnr.
However, standing head and shoulders above all the ancient and modern examples is Jesus Christ. Jesus is the epitome of moral rectitude. He lived a perfect sinless life and by so doing was able to offer up the perfect sacrifice for the sins of the world. No one could fault the spotless Lamb of God. On one occasion he said to those who were opposed to him, ‘which one of you convicts me of sin?’
His values of compassion, love, sacrifice, forgiveness; stretching out His hands of love to the marginalised, the disenfranchised, the poor and needy in society made Him to command attention, not just of those on the fringes of mainstream life, but also the powers that be. They knew that His lifestyle choices and the values on which those choices were based were not only unimpeachable, but also stood diametrically opposed to their life of deceit, oppression and hypocrisy. Jesus commanded attention because of the values He lived out. He is our example per excellence.
The simple point of application is clear: if you want to command attention, let the values that underpin your life speak for you as people see them practically demonstrated by the choices you make – values of integrity, love, compassion, moral courage, loyalty, contentment, selfless sacrifice and absolute devotion to God.
Copyright Emmanuel Mbakwe 2013©
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