Friday, December 22, 2017


Photo taken Nov. 2017 at Bellingrath Gardens in Alabama.
One recent morning, I woke up with the song, Rise Up, Shepherd, and Follow, playing in my mind, like a musical CD set on repeat. As I listened to those words, I thought about the practical aspects of what "rise up and follow" meant for me:
  • Get up out of my warm, comfortable bed (even though I felt reluctant to do so) and begin the tasks I didn’t particularly want to do or feel competent to do.
  • Learn more about Jesus and try to follow His example and keep His commandments. I do the “learning” part reasonably well. For example, I listen to Max MacLean read from the New International Version Bible (via the YouVersion app on my phone). I read and study God’s Word. I read books and commentaries written by other Christians. I discuss insights with other Christians, etc. But I find the “following His example and keeping His commandments” far more difficult to do, despite the subject/skill.
  • Become a mentee, eager to learn from my Mentor, my Teacher, Who says in Matthew 11:28-30, NKJV:

Come to Me, 
all you who labor 
and are heavy laden, 
and I will give you rest.
Take My yoke upon you 
and learn from Me,
 for I am gentle 
and lowly in heart, 
and you will find rest 
for your souls.
For My yoke is easy 
and My burden is light.

That invitation is so wonderful that I can hardly believe it’s meant for me--and for you, too! But He does invite us, imperfect and inept though we are, to follow Him: to go wherever He goes, to listen and learn from all He does and says, to converse with Him as easily as with a dear friend, to consult with Him about matters both great and small….

In order to follow Him, you and I may have to eliminate some current activities and/or greatly reduce time spent on them. Although that will be difficult to do, it will be exhilarating to stay in close contact with Him at all times and to simply be and do whatever He says.

To listen to two different arrangements of that song, click here and here.

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