To be a Christian means to be a follower of Jesus Christ and, by walking with Him, to begin to enjoy the life that He offers.
Today, many people follow their favourite soap operas like Eastenders or Coronation Street. But that doesn't mean they will ever speak with a London accent or move to a terraced house in Manchester.
Other people are more dedicated and will follow a particular football team, travelling to every game both home and away, but they may never kick a football themselves or ever actually play for their team.
Being a follower of Jesus involves much more than watching TV for half an hour each day or even going to church once a week. Following Jesus involves a whole change of lifestyle.
When I was a child I would play in the school yard and one of the games we played began
with one or two children in a line following the leader. The leader would flap their arms
and we would copy them. They'd wobble their legs and we would follow and the line would
grow with up to twenty children following the leader all around the playground. How many
of us have been asked by someone where something is and said to them "Walk this way"?
We have then set off as though one of our legs was longer than the other and expected
them to follow doing the same silly walk?
It is a simple illustration but that is what it
means to follow Jesus. When He was alive here
on earth Jesus called twelve disciples to "follow
Him". As His disciples they would be with Him
24-7. They would learn His teaching and watch
to see how He lived by what He was saying and,
slowly but surely, He would shape their lives.
They learned His attitudes to various things: His
love for His Father, His compassion for the sick
and suffering which often caused Him to perform
miracles, and they would copy Him by doing the
As the disciples followed Jesus, day by day, they became more like Him and, as they did so,
they began to enjoy the rich, abundant life He had promised them...
...And the good news is, this life is open to everyone. It's even open to you!...