Tuesday, April 5, 2011

I Will Follow

Not only is this the title to an early U2 song, but what Jesus calls us to do. It is not easy. To follow requires listening, watching, trusting and obeying. In a very real sense there are no leaders in the church, only followers. There are those who want to be leaders, but the problem with taking on the label and position of leader, is that one receives the focus and the faith of those who should be looking to and putting their faith in Jesus. For those called to be teachers, evangelists, apostles, etc., the call is not to lead, but to point, to say, "Come and see", not, "Follow me and we'll do great things."

David Horn writes how taking on big visions, big schemes from "leaders" in the church is just the opposite of what Jesus called us to do. He uses a quote from Bonhoeffer's book, Life Together to illustrate the pitfalls of taking on the role of leader.
God hates visionary dreaming; it makes the dreamer proud and pretentious. The man who fashions a visionary ideal of community demands that it be realized by God, by others, and by himself. He enters the community of Christians with his demands, sets up his own law, and judges the brethren and God Himself accordingly. He stands adamant, a living reproach to all others in the circle of brethren. He acts as if he is the creator of the Christian community, as if his dream binds men together. When things do not go his way, he calls the effort a failure. When his ideal picture is destroyed, he sees the community going to smash. So he becomes first an accuser of his brethren, then an accuser of God, and finally the despairing accuser of himself.
I titled this post, I Will Follow, not because I do it well, or even want it well, but because Jesus has called. He has instructed his disciples to proclaim the Kingdom, to feed, to heal, to instruct, to serve, to become like children, to die to self, to love. This idea of leading is our own invention and desire, and one which I am prone to buy into. I think we in the church have done this because what Jesus calls us to do is just so hard. How much we must rely on his grace.


  1. Love the blog. First time I have been here.

  2. I teach at a high school and have a chance to instruct sophomores spiritually for the next two weeks. What would you reccommend.