First United Methodist Church, Lewistown, PA 17044  ~  717-248-4618   ~  fumc200@outlook.com

"Follow me."

September 6, 2016

Simon says. "Sit on the rock." We all sit on the rock.

Simon says. "Let's swim upstream." We all swim upstream.

"Let's get back on the rock." We continue to swim upstream.

Simon says, "Let's swim downstream." We all swim downstream.

 

    In the game "Simon says" the trick is to deceive participants and get them to do something Simon didn't say to do. The other day I watched a mother duck with her seven ducklings. She had them perched on a large rock near the shore of a small creek (crick for some). I took a few photos of them from the opposite side and admired their calm demeanor. The ducklings had no care or concern of any danger because mom was on watch. 

    I ventured down the embankment to get a closer look and immediately the mother duck and ducklings slid into the water and swam away from me. Hmm, I wasn't going to do anything to harm them, but momma duck made a noise specific to her brood and off they went. I retreated from the creek's edge and walked on downstream.

    A little later, I watched this group of waterfowl glide by me as they headed to another location. It was pretty cool to see each duckling mimic mother duck's every move. There was little variation and not once did one or all of them do their own thing. They simply imitated mom duckling's lead. It was as though an invisible cord had connected all eight creatures together.

                                                             (10 seconds of willful obedience)

    I have always marveled when reading the accounts of Jesus calling his disciples. The twelve were engaged in a profession of some sort and when Jesus said, "Follow me." they immediately left that profession to follow Jesus. It didn't work that way for me. I fought 'tooth and nail' when I sensed a call to follow Him. I went this way and that way. I made one excuse after another. In all my disobedience, the voice continued to say, "Follow me."

        "After this, Jesus went out and saw a tax collector by the name of Levi sitting at his tax booth. “Follow me,”

        Jesus said to him, and Levi got up, left everything and followed him. Then Levi held a great banquet for

        Jesus at his house, and a large crowd of tax collectors and others were eating with them. But the

        Pharisees and the teachers of the law who belonged to their sect complained to his disciples, “Why do you

        eat and drink with tax collectors and ‘sinners’?” Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a

        doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” (Luke 5:27-32, NIV)

Followers of Jesus, I ask you a question. If you believe and have committed to follow Jesus, have you mirrored His every move and have you stayed close to Him all the time or just when it's convenient? Okay, that was actually two-ish questions.

    It is a fair question. It helps me understand my own obedience to follow Jesus. It helps me identify moments when I chose to do something off script and go my own way to do my own thing. How about you, are you obediently following Jesus? Are you willing to go where He goes and minister to only those whom Jesus would minister to? When we stay in close formation with our leader, protector, and teacher, the invisible cord is strong and allows powerful things to occur. Simon says, "Follow me." Jesus says the same thing.

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