You remember when you were a kid in school and the teacher would say, "get in line!" What was the best part of getting in a line? Being the line leader, of course! Whenever we would get in line, there would usually always be a race to be the line leader (if the teacher didn't assign line leaders). Now that I think about it, what is so cool about being a line leader anyway?! I guess it's because we are humans and even when we are kids, we like to be in control...go figure.
If I wasn't line leader, I always hoped to be closest to the front. You want to know why? I remember the first time I got in trouble at school was in 3rd grade and I was in the back of the line (aka "caboose" the teacher would call it, to make us feel better...it never worked for me). Anyway, I was talking to little Tommy and we all know, you're not supposed to talk in the hallway, right? Well my teacher heard me chatting away and as a consequence I had to pull a marker (in front of all my classmates) and let me tell you, I thought the world was ending. So ever since that life changing moment (well, maybe not life changing), I decided that it is less tempting to talk or misbehave when you're closest to the line leader.
So while I was having my quiet time, reading my bible and listening to music (Audrey Asssad, of course!) I realized that we aren't meant to be line leaders. Line leaders are supposed to be responsible and know where to go and how to get there. Let's face it, we aren't always good at those three things. I'm irresponsible at times...I don't always know where to go and I definitely don't know how to get there. You want to know my solution? I step back. Let Jesus lead and realize that He is my line leader.
In order to follow Jesus like a good follower, I must stay towards the front of the line, preferably right behind Him. The farther back that I'm in line, the more I lose sight of Him. We are more likely to be tempted to do things we shouldn't and that leads us to discipline (like pulling a marker...or worse, and that's no fun, trust me!) Line leaders lead us to our destination and set an example for us along the way. Who better to lead us, than Jesus?! He sets the example. He knows where to go. He knows how to get there. He knows how to act along the way. He set the example of patience, true love, forgiveness, acceptance, service, humility and many, many other attributes.
Jesus told his disciples (and us), "Whoever wants to be my disciple, must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me" (Matthew 16:24). John 8:12 says, "When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” There are many other verses about how Jesus is to be our example...our line leader, but these show that we can't go wrong when we follow him.
Let's have the mindset of Audrey Assad's song, "No Turning Back".... "I'm following behind you. I'm staying close beside you. I've got nothing to lose and I've got everything to find." So step back and let Jesus lead you. He knows the way.
Check out one of my favorite songs...