Go read Philippians 3:17.
<> Are you a natural follower or a leader?
<> Regardless of that answer, how good are you at following?
True following is a rarity in our culture. It is far overshadowed by 1.) Open rebellion – outright refusal to follow and submit or 2.) Insubordination – an outward show of following while inwardly rejecting the example set and spreading divisive philosophies that undermine the authority.
Both of these are caused by pride. As long as I think I’m smarter/better/more competent than the person I am supposed to be following, my brain will refuse to truly follow. Biblically, this is going to be a major issue.
Go read Matt. 4:19, 8:22, 9:9, Mark 1:17, 2:14, Luke 5:27, 6:46, John 14:15 and 23-24
<> How clear is Jesus about what we are expected to do?
<> Do you follow Jesus in the way His disciples did?
<> Do you obey His commands?
There is an instant theological rebellion that starts to well up in me as I look at these passages. My heart says, “yeah but wait! Jesus doesn’t really care about mindless obedience. He wants relationship!” That’s true. He wants relationship – and He wants your obedience. He wants you to know Him – and He wants you to obey Him. This is not some kind of balanced friendship relationship with a whole lot of give and take. He wants to be the Master of our lives. In fact, He is the Master of our lives whether we submit to Him or not. The real question is whether we will continue to live in denial of that fact or whether we will start to humbly align our lives with that truth.
The Right People
I start by talking about following Jesus, because until we submit to Him, we will never learn to walk in the balance of following the right people. Once you start to deal with your proud heart that refuses to follow Jesus or people, then you can start dealing with the logistics of following.
Go read Eph. 5:21.
<> Out of respect for Christ, do you submit to other believers?
Without a doubt there is an example worth following and there is one to be very cautious about. Paul makes this clear in Phil. 4:17-19. So here are the grid questions to ask yourself:
1.) Do they submit to Christ and His Word? Do they obey the Bible to the best of their ability and understanding?
2.) Is there any area of life where they are more mature or proficient than you? What is it about the person that you respect?
3.) How can you get what they have? How is the best way to go about getting assistance from them?
Too often we assume that in order for someone to disciple us, we need to set up a formalized weekly meeting for them to pour into our lives. That is not true. Sometimes you might just need to grab coffee one time with someone and ask them twenty questions before you lose them. Sometimes you might need to hang out once a month. Sometimes you just need to watch them from a distance and observe how they live.
At the end of the day it’s this simple: 1.) Repent from your pride. 2.) Follow Jesus. 3.) Follow other people who follow Jesus.