If you tell someone they are nothing more than a follower they are likely to get upset. Everyone wants to think of themselves as being their own person; someone in charge of their own lives. I hate to break it to you, but we are all followers. Don’t believe me? Read on…
From the Time We Were Born
We have all been followers from the time we were born. Think about it. Every one of us was born in a state of complete and total innocence. We had no preconceived ideas or expectations of any kind. All we knew was what we were told and what our environment impressed upon us. We are all merely the products of the myriad of messages, spoken and unspoken, that we have listened to from the day we were born to this present moment. The progression is pretty easy to trace when you think about it.
The first ones we listened to and followed were likely our parents. Everything they said was right because we had no basis for challenging them. Eventually other voices began to speak into our lives: friends, teachers, authors, fashion designers, entertainers of various kinds, and the list goes on endlessly. Now we had choices. We could choose which voice we listened to, and which one we turned a deaf ear to. Whichever voice we listened to at the moment is the one we followed.
At some point in this process we begin to believe we are thinking for ourselves. That is not entirely accurate. We are bombarded by voices every day trying to get us to think like they do. While it is true that we can make our own choices, nine times out of ten we are following the suggestions of someone else. Even when we simply follow our own appetites, we often satisfy them with something someone else suggested would do the trick.
Jesus Understood This
In the days when He walked among us, the Lord Jesus Christ understood this principle. He knew that everyone He encountered was already following someone. They might be following the voice of the Roman government who was in power at the time. Or they might be following the teachings of the local Rabbi. Some zealous religious group may have caught their attention so they would follow them. This is why He often gave the command, “Follow Me!” He was calling people to turn from all the other voices they were following in order to listen to Him and follow where He would lead. This is all God has asked of mankind from the beginning. He wanted us to focus on His voice and obey what He told us. This is the way He designed you and I to live. This is the way life us conducted under the government of God.
Who Are You Following?
Who who are you following? I hope I have made it clear that we are all following somebody. There is a voice above it all that calls out to us. It is the voice of God calling us to turn from whatever road we find ourselves on at the moment and follow Him. Those who respond to His voice will live under His gracious government. That’s called living in the Reign.