Follow what?

29 Mar

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There’s been one main theme in the lessons I’ve been learning through Bible College, Church/Youth and in my personal life. That is the simplicity of “Follow Me”

In Matthew 4:19 – Jesus says “Follow me and I’ll make you fishers of men”

He didn’t say follow my laws, follow my rituals, follow my rules, or follow my rewards….He said “Follow Me” and those fishermen dropped everything and followed Him. Those fishermen went on a grand journey with Jesus and encountered crazy situations. I believe their lives are the epitome of what it is like to follow Jesus.

There is so much simplicity in this statement. So often, we get caught up over-complicating every detail. We get caught up in the “What can and can’t I do” discussions. It gets so bad that sometimes, we find ourselves trying to find loopholes in the Bible to allow us to do certain things and excuse certain behaviour. I’ve had many people approaching me asking “If it was okay to do certain things” i.e. clubbing, drinking, drugs, smoking and so on. 99% of the time it results in me saying “It’s your life and your choice, do you think it’s the best for you and God?” (among other things)

My parents have said to my sister and I – “We don’t care what you guys do or wherever you go, as long as you stay with God”. You may think that’s a bit careless; but again, there’s so much simplicity in that statement. Roger Archer (A Pastor), at the birth of his daughter, cradled her in his arms and raised her to God saying “God! If my daughter doesn’t end up following you in the future, please kill her now…” Now you all probably think he’s crazy, but I can see where he’s coming from and that to me is the most selfless act of love he can ever do. He valued his daughter’s life so much that he wanted her to be with God whether it was now or the future.

If we take our focus and energy off the logistics of ‘rules, rituals, laws, commandments or anything else” and bring it back to the mindset of simply following Jesus, we will witness a huge transformation in our life. The reason why I say this is because when we make the decision to follow Jesus, and wholeheartedly do so, we tap into the life that God wants us to lead. When we follow him, surrendered, God uses that willing heart and begins to shape us. The natural outcome is we become hungry for God; with this hunger, we dwell deeper into the Word of God and allow him to speak over us; everything begins to fall in place one by one. In the process, we allow God to enter our lives and take over the burdens of work, finances, education, relationships and worries. This is when truly we begin to develop a powerful relationship with God. This attitude moves far greater than that of a man focused on every other aspect of Christianity.This is where it becomes the most fulfilling and satisfying we can be, following God (and that is more than we can imagine)

We are ambassadors of Christ. As we take up the call to follow God, we become an example of what it is to be a follower. As God works in us and through us, we have a responsibility as a disciple. That responsibility is to lead people to God. I want us to ask ourselves, are we adding to that responsibility through our actions or are we decreasing our credibility? (Hint: It’s one or the other!)

1 Corinthians 10:23 – Everything is permissible”–but not everything is beneficial. “Everything is permissible”–but not everything is constructive.

As we follow God, there is a natural desire to become who God wants us to become. Of course, we are not perfect and do make mistakes but that is all part of the process and the battle; the real key is that we are not intentionally creating those ‘mistakes’. Through this desire and willing heart, God breaks, stretches and molds us with greater capacity.

Personally, I have been so broken (Refer to previous post) that I am at the stage in my life where I do not even want to take full control. I have been battered and bruised that all I have learnt is to just focus on God and learn everything he has to share with me. This mindset has been so relieving; sure I still worry at times but those thoughts are counter-acted with the fact that God has my back and I will be okay. All my focus is invested into following God, despite stumbling a few times, and this focus is showing the natural out-working of God’s hand over my life.

Jesus said “Come and follow me”

This is the one and only key we need to have in life. Simplicity at its most effective.

Everything will fall in place when you focus on that (I am definitely not saying it’s going to be easy). A willing heart is all God wants.

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