Crossing
Your
Jordan Ministries
Embracing God's Promise of Abundance When Hardship Endures
As for You, Follow Me
by Jenny on April 22nd, 2016

"As for you, follow Me." John 21:22

Every time I hear the phrase "follow me" I start to hum the tune of the popular preschool song "Following the Leader." "We're following the leeeeder, the leeeeder, the leeeeder, we're following the leeeeder wherever they may go."

I can't recall ever playing "Follow the Leader" as a child but if I had been invited to play I'm afraid the conversation would have gone something like this:

Teacher: Jenny, would you like to play follow the leader with us?
Me: Follow the leader? Um, no ma'am. I'd rather BE the leader. (Smile.)

Maybe it's my first-born-child syndrome. Maybe it's my type-A personality. Maybe it's my natural bent. Maybe it's pride and arrogance. Or maybe it's a lethal combination of all of the above. But I like to lead. I like to be in control, and to plan for what may come around the bend. Maybe that's why I struggle so much with Jesus' invitation to follow Him.

I'm unsure at what age I wrote the first script for my life but I know I was fairly young. I planned to pursue a degree in college that would lead to a lucrative career, work for most of my life so that I could enjoy the lucrativeness of my career, and get married and have some kids somewhere in between all the studying and working.

Check.

But having babies didn't go exactly how I had planned. As a result I left my lucrative career to stay home.

Uncheck.

Grieving the loss of one of my babies as well as my career I eventually cried out to God and asked Him to lead me through this life that now looked so foreign to me. God answered. I discovered a love for God and His Word and began to share my love for Him with others. I had a new plan!

Check.

But I had more babies. Four more. And God called me to homeschool. As a result I recently had to step down from an area of life in which I found so much purpose, so much redemption--teaching God's Word to women on a weekly basis.

Uncheck.

Twice in life I've found myself back at square one. I hate square one, especially when I'm nearly half way through the 80 years (plus or minus a few) God gives to man (I'm referencing Psalm 90:10 half jokingly). Twice I've had to give up my plans, my "career" path. It hasn't been any easier the second time around. But recently God gave me comfort through His precious Word, and that is the point to my rambling.

The disciples didn't live out their original career paths either.

Matthew didn't finish life as a tax collector.

Peter, Andrew, James and John didn't finish life as fishermen.

Instead, when Jesus invited these men to follow Him, Scripture tells us they left everything at once and did! These men where at their place of employment--Matthew was IN the tax collector's booth, Peter, Andrew, James and John were IN their fishing boats--when Jesus called them. Yet they did not hesitate to leave everything behind in response to Jesus' call. (Matthew 4:18-22, 9:9)

Were these men crazy? Were they that bored with their occupations, their life plans?

Or did they know Jesus offered a life like no other?

In John 10:10 Jesus says that He came to give life abundantly.

Psalm 34:10 says that those who trust in the Lord will lack no good thing.

In Mark 8:34-35  Jesus called the crowd to join His disciples and said, “If any of you wants to be My follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow Me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for My sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it."

Later Jesus promised, "Everyone who has given up house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or property, for My sake and for the Good News, will receive now in return a hundred times as many houses, brothers, sisters, mothers, children, and property—along with persecution. And in the world to come that person will have eternal life." (Mark 10:29-30) Side note: let's take that promise figuratively, not literally. What would I do with 100 mamas? Or 100 children--have mercy!

When you come to the crossroads, or maybe I should say to the cross, which will you choose?

It's an invitation, not a command. Really, I think it's an invitation we must respond to anew each day. Every day I awake I must choose whether to pursue my plans, my agenda for the day or His.

The rich man couldn't bear to leave his things behind and he went away sad (Mark 10:17-22).

The disciples left everything at once, followed Jesus and turned the world upside down.

Which will you choose?

As for me, though it means that I don't know what lies ahead, I've chosen to follow Him.


Posted in Grief, Homeschooling, Parenting, Pursuing Your Calling    Tagged with no tags


2 Comments

Christy - April 22nd, 2016 at 7:00 AM
Oh my goodness what a deep chord this has struck--you may have given up your weekly group but your writing lands the mark perfectly! I needed this of all days as we make our journey to celebrate the birthdays of two of your precious little ones. This is much food for thought. Never to old to learn from the younger women. Career paths? Hum? Certiainly on my agenda now! How blessed am I to have a daughter-in-law who loves the Lord like you do & so willing to obey.
Melissa - April 24th, 2016 at 5:55 PM
I am at this crossroad. I need a new career, and want to follow Jesus too. I don't know what that looks like yet, but thank you for the reminders/encouragement.
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Welcome!
Crossing Your Jordan

I am a stay-at-home, homeschooling, Bible-teaching mom of six, and wife to my college sweetheart. I believe everyone can live a life of abundance through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and radical obedience to His Word.

Do you have a relationship with God through Christ? If not, I would consider it pure joy to tell you about God, why you need Him, and how to be reconciled to Him through Christ.

If you know Christ as your Savior, do you know how to follow Him as Lord? If, like me, life's challenges have caused you to question whether you truly want to follow God's plan for you, or you simply don't know how to recognize God's ways due to a lack of biblical literacy, I would love to teach you what I've come to know about God through His Word.

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Visit the following link to read or search through Jenny's posts dating prior to August 2014. www.jennyhander.blogspot.com