This preoccupation with Jesus’ social and economic identity – whether asserting his relative poverty or affluence – misses the point. We are never explicitly called to imitate Jesus’ early life or career. These aspects of Jesus’ example are never directly identified as the framework for the economic life of Christians, though they obviously influence us.
But we are specifically commanded, over and over again, to imitate Jesus’ unselfish giving on the cross.
To be sure, we are not all necessarily obligated to enter into a life of voluntary poverty. But we cannot claim Christ’s cross as the source of our lives without allowing the same cross to shape the whole course of our lives.
Our faithfulness is not to be judged by where we fit into the socioeconomic ladder, but by the degree to which our daily decisions and life story as a whole correspond to Christ’s self-giving example on the cross.
Question for Reflection
- Do you agree with Kapic?
Kelly Kapic, God So Loved, He Gave, 156.