16 Things to Avoid for the Faithful Follower of Jesus

Following Jesus changes everything about how you live. It’s about showing the same love, kindness, and understanding that Jesus did, every single day. As his followers, it’s on us to live out his teachings in all we do. Here are 16 crucial things to avoid if you want to live a life that truly honors his teachings.

Harbor Hate

Jesus’ command to love our enemies is perhaps one of His most challenging teachings. Following Him means letting go of hate and embracing forgiveness and love, even in the most difficult circumstances.

Elevate Money Over People

Jesus warned of the dangers of letting money rule our lives. In following Him, we’re encouraged to view wealth as a tool for good, not an end goal. Our financial decisions should reflect our commitment to helping others and advancing the kingdom of God.

Judge by Appearances

Jesus looked beyond the external, reaching out to those society had marginalized. Whether someone was sick, poor, or simply different, Jesus showed us that everyone deserves love and acceptance. As His followers, we’re called to see beyond appearances to the heart of every person.

Live in Judgment

Jesus famously taught not to judge others, reminding us of our own imperfections. Following Him means practicing empathy and forgiveness, recognizing that everyone is on a unique journey.

Ignore Hunger

Feeding the hungry was both a literal and metaphorical part of Jesus’ teachings. He showed us that addressing physical needs is integral to spiritual well-being. Sharing resources and ensuring everyone has enough is a direct call to action from Jesus to His followers.

Neglect the Sick

Healing was central to Jesus’ mission, reflecting His deep compassion for the suffering. In today’s world, following Jesus means advocating for and providing healthcare to those in need, recognizing healthcare as a fundamental expression of love and care.

Foster Exclusion

Jesus spread a message of unconditional love and open arms. He dined with sinners and spoke with outcasts, teaching us that to follow Him means to build bridges, not walls. Exclusion has no place in the heart of a follower of Jesus.

Underestimate the Value of Community

Jesus cherished the community, gathering people together to share, learn, and grow in faith. Truly following Him means valuing these connections, recognizing that we’re stronger and more vibrant together.

Neglect Self-reflection

Jesus often withdrew to pray and reflect. Following Him means regularly examining our own hearts and minds, seeking to grow closer to Him and more aligned with His will.

Seek Power Over Service

The act of Jesus washing the feet of His disciples showcased His commitment to service over power. He taught that true greatness comes from serving others, not from seeking power or dominance.

Misuse Religion to Harm

Jesus critiqued those who used religion to exclude or harm others. True followers recognize the church as a place of refuge and love, not judgment or harm.

Exclude People for Their Beliefs

Jesus never turned anyone away because of their religious beliefs. He embraced individuals from all walks of life, demonstrating that faith in action means inclusivity, not exclusion. Following Jesus means opening our arms and hearts to everyone, regardless of their spiritual journey.

Lose Hope

Jesus was an embodiment of hope, promising His presence and the coming of God’s kingdom. Despair and cynicism don’t have a place in the life of someone following Jesus. Instead, we’re invited to live in the hope of His promises.

Disregard the Poor

Jesus paid special attention to the poor and disenfranchised, showing us that they hold a special place in God’s heart. Ignoring the needs of the poor is not an option for those following Jesus.

Resort to Violence

Aside from the incident with the money changers, Jesus’ life was a testament to non-violence. He taught peace and turned away from aggression. Following Jesus means seeking peaceful resolutions and turning the other cheek.

Shun Forgiveness

Forgiveness was central to Jesus’ message. He forgave those who betrayed Him and taught us to do the same. Holding grudges and refusing to forgive are incompatible with the path of following Jesus.

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