December 2019  
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"And Peter followed him afar off." Mark 14:54

A sign on the truck said to stay back 100 feet. It is dangerous to follow some things too close. There are other things, and other people, that we should not follow at all.

Jesus said, "Follow me." Now he is someone that you can follow, and the closer the better. He called fishermen and others from their everyday lives to follow him, and their lives changed for eternity. Some said that they would follow, but first they had other things to do. You can't wait until tomorrow to follow Jesus when he is going today.  The keeper of eternity is not waiting until we have time. 

We are told to follow peace with all people (Hebrews 12:14).  Don’t you wish we would?  Peace is from Jesus, but many say, “Peace! Peace!” who don’t want to go His way.  His way of peace is in the steps that a follower of Christ takes every day of their life.  I choose to follow Christ because He is the way, the truth and the life.  Why would I want to follow another?  “The Lord is my Shepherd…He leadeth me.”  

In today’s text Peter followed Jesus afar off.  Perhaps that was all he could do since Jesus was surrounded by soldiers.  He didn’t need a sign to tell him to stay back 100 feet.  Yet, there is a warning in these words.   When you follow from a distance it is easier to get lost.  Following from a distance was the path Peter took before he denied knowing the Lord; it brought him bitter tears.

We should follow Jesus because someone is following us.  A good leader must first be a good follower.  A pastor who refuses to follow Jesus should get out of the shepherding business.  Every Christian parent should be walking with Christ, or what will happen to the children?  The fact is that Christians are followers of Jesus, and the sign behind us should say, “Stay Close to Me Because I’m Staying Close to Him.”

There is no time for sheep to be going any direction that feels good, and no time to choose our own philosophy instead of Jesus.  The hour is critical, the answer to this troubled world is in front of us, “Choose today who you will serve (follow) but as fo me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”

Grace and Peace,  Rev Ray

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