Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Follow The Leader: Follow The Teacher

“In the company of Jesus, there are no experts.  There’s only beginners, and necessary followers.  Because in the company of Jesus, nobody knows where they’re going.”  (Jason Upton from his album On The Rim Of The Visible World)

I recently started volunteering in my 4 year-old twins’ Rainbows class at our church.  I kinda got drafted since my mother is coordinator over Missionettes, but I was drafted willingly.  We have about 10 – 12 preschoolers all anxious to play and learn about God!  They are a lot of fun to play with!

Last week we were getting them ready to go outside by lining up in front of the door.  The other teacher, Ms. H., was standing in front.  When everyone was in a single file line, she led them out the door and out to the playground.  It was a simple operation, and yet for some children it was all they could do to just wait for the cue to move.  They would ask over and over, “can we go yet?”  When it was time to come in again, we performed the same drill.  Line up so that we can go the water fountain and get a drink and then go back to the room. 
(picture off of the internet, not our actual class)

Over the past month, I have been looking at a great many things like trust, leadership, followers, direction and guidance.  We all look at some of these things at various points in our lives.  Where do we go?  What path to take?  Who do we follow?  Is it time to lead? 

While praying over these questions, God reminded me of the children in line.  They don’t know which direction to go.  However, they follow the person in front of them to get them to the playground, the potty, the water fountain, or back to the classroom.  They are trusting, without question, that the person in front of them can see the leader.  The leader is trusting that the teacher knows the way to where they need to go. 

Most of you, by now, can see the Spiritual connection here; and so did I.  But then God took it to another level.  Ready?  Here we go.

Most of us are not pastors, evangelists, prophets, or even claim to be!  We may have gifts that we operate in but that does not make us leader.  In the line, we are all following the person in front of us.  We are trusting that the leader of the line can see the teacher who knows the agenda and direction!  If the leader loses sight of the teacher, the whole line goes the wrong way!  If the middle person decides to go his or her own way, then half of the line is led astray! 

Now, a problem can sometimes occur when choosing a leader of the line.  Everyone raises their hand because it is a privilege to be able to lead the line!  What happens when the leader of the line thinks he knows better than the teacher?

People of God, in His presence, we are all followers.  In His presence, when He is teaching and leading us, we must learn to follow Him and keep our eyes on him.  We cannot blindly follow the leader.  See if the leader is following the teacher, we will continue to form a beautiful line which will function as such.  BUT, if someone goes astray, then you will not get lost with the rest of the line if you keep your eyes on the teacher, the master, our savior... GOD!

Then God said this… You know, you’re not really leading, right?  You know you’re not really helping me, right?

See these children are so right.  It’s not about the chore that we give them to keep them occupied or involved.  It’s about the willingness to please the teacher!  God was saying, they want to lead because they want to help with the journey!  They want to be used by the teacher.  That is what we love about our children.  They earnestly want to help!

My husband had a rough day at work, as he does a lot of days.  Nathan heard his despair over sore feet, knelt down and began to rub his feet.  Did he help the situation?  No, but the gesture is why we love him so much.  He is willing to do whatever he can to show his love for his father!

That is why God loves His children, because we please Him!

Next time we get flustered in the chore, sit back and ask God, am I really helping?  God, I want to help you.  Then watch God lovingly smile at us.  Relax and just follow the teacher!

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