If you ask anyone what they know about the state of Wisconsin, most answers would include…cheese, beer, dairy cattle, cranberries…but everyone would answer: the Green Bay Packers! Even the most novice of football fans would recognize that Wisconsin is crazy about its football team in Green Bay.

On Aug. 11, 1919, a group of young athletes gathered in the editorial room of the old Green Bay Press-Gazette building on Cherry Street and organized a football team under the financial leadership of Curly Lambeau and George Calhoun. It was Lambeau’s employer (the Indian Packing Company, where he worked as a shipping clerk) that staked the money for the jerseys. Because a packing company sponsored the money, it was only natural the team be called the Green Bay Packers!

Many legendary players and coaches have been involved with the team during the past 94 years, but none as legendary as Coach Vince Lombardi. He believed mental attitude accounted for 75 percent of the ingredients of winning. He felt that everyone wants to win, but most people don’t believe they can; therefore they give up before having tried. His philosophy was that the more an individual believed he or she could win, the harder he or she would work. The harder one worked, the more one believed he or she could win, and the longer the person would persist until success was achieved. It all boiled down to attitude.

Dr. James Diehl, General Superintendent Emeritus, said at a Ministers and Mates Retreat in Green Lake, Wis., in 2012 that Paul believed in a Jesus attitude and told the Philippians so in his letter to them in verse 2:5 (NIV): “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus.” This attitude is not something that comes automatically when we get saved, but is developed throughout our lives.

What is the Jesus attitude? Paul discusses that from Philippians 2:5-11. He said:

The Jesus Attitude Is the Servant Attitude (Phil. 2:6-7)
Bruce Thielemann relates a conversation with a member of his church who said, “You preachers talk a lot about ‘do unto others,’ but when you get right down to it, it comes down to basin theology.”

Thielemann was taken back. He asked the layman what he meant by “basin theology.”

The man proceeded to say, “Remember what Pilate did when he had the chance to acquit Jesus? He called for a basin and washed his hands of the whole thing. Jesus, the night before He was to die, called for a basin of water and proceeded to wash the feet of the disciples.” It was love in action. Jesus demonstrated that if one sincerely believed the disciples were to show love in action, He needed to model it for them…and He did.

Which will we be: one who calls for a basin to wash our hands of the problems of the world, or a basin to wash the feet of others?

The Jesus Attitude Is the Cross Attitude (Phil. 2:8)
The cross attitude is that of obedience. A look at the life of Jesus makes it clear that obedience is anything but easy. The scorn of the religious leadership and finally the very ones He came to save. His disciples abandoned Him and deserted Him at the Garden when Judas and the soldiers came to take Him to the Sanhedrin. He was mocked by the crowds as He was paraded before them by Pilate. Added to all of this was His humiliation and agony of the cross at Golgotha as He hung for hours before the crowds.

Obedience is abandoning our selfish ways, our wants, our desires and aim to surrender completely to God’s ways, His wants, His desires for our lives.
Obedience is measured by our actions rather than our speeches. Obedience is our demonstration of love.

The Jesus Attitude Is the Worship Attitude (Phil. 2:9-11)
Paul expressed to his readers that the Jesus attitude includes worship. We worship God the Father through Jesus the Son! God has exalted Jesus to the highest place in the galaxy and given Him the name above all names. It is this Jesus who all people of all times and places will bow down and confess with their tongues His lordship!

Worship is for all people to draw near and listen to a God who is communicating His love! Worship is an attitude of the heart that draws near and stays calm and quiet. As someone wrote, “God hears the inaudible and sees the invisible” of the heart.

Worship is a conscious decision to look fully into the face of God with reverence and praise. Oh, Worship the King is not just a song. It is life!
The Jesus attitude…do you have it?

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About The Author

Rev. Derl Keefer pastored in the Church of the Nazarene for over 30 years. He currently serves as the Adult Development Ministries Coordinator for the Sunday School Ministries department at the Church of the Nazarene Global Ministry Center. He received his B.A. in Religion from Southern Nazarene University and his M. Div from Nazarene Theological Seminary. His other books include Let's Get Committed, Wedding Sermons and Marriage Ceremonies, and Open Doors.

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