Follow Me is a game we learned first as children. It’s a game of pursuit reduced to a single goal—just track the leader. It’s easy to play and carried more fun that its simplicity suggested. As children we played it as a game. We didn't know it would be repeated as our first faith steps with Christ.
The mystery of tomorrow and the uncertainty of circumstance combine to elevate our anxiety. Not knowing. Not seeing. We hesitate to embrace the very thing we long for, an opportunity to begin again. How do we resolve our regrets of yesterday and our fears of tomorrow?
Some picture meditation as a process of discharge—carving out internal empty space. Biblical meditation is not a void to maintain with empty head and heart. There is content to biblical meditation. We are to consider deeply the works and words of God. Paul commanded that we think on things that are just and excellent (Philippians 4:8). The cup is to be filled, not emptied.
There are some things about God I take for granted. They are truths so deeply embedded they have become assumptions. But what I see as assumptions were once stunning revelations.
The daily nourishment of grace to our souls overshadows loss. Glory illuminates darkness. All of this is good theology but it tends to stay in our heads. What practical difference does it make when I confront living changes? Sickness. Aging. Injury. Abandonment. Death. How does this truth equip me to navigate the gains and losses of change in my life?
Rather than being responsible for the sprouting of many trees, God called me to focus on the growth of my own soul. He forced my attention inward, to consider the sapless, barren, wooden state of my heart. I didn’t have to bear the burden of worry over the weather or come up with new agricultural techniques. I wasn’t responsible for the orchard—there was a divine Gardener tending His field. This way of ministry was new to me.
Bible preachers, teachers, and readers tend to approach the Bible solely as a source of information, looking for instructions or directions. We employ a Google methodology, hoping for instant answers. That's what we do; but there's another way.
Frankly we are not aging well. We dread it. Society has us convinced that getting older is a curse. So, we try to cream away our wrinkles, comb over our bald spots and worry whether our health and money will last as long as we do. Is this how we want to walk into our senior years: laden with fears and clinging to yesterday? God considers long life to be a blessing (Deut.6:2), but we get half way and experience a mid-life crisis. There is a better way.
The job description of a parent is pretty basic. We're to prepare our children for life and eternity. Of course, that entails instruction in a myriad of tasks—from brushing teeth and good dating habits, to undiluted character and a spiritual heart. The list of parental objectives is daunting enough, but I dare to add one more.