Let Me Lead
26 September 2016
Reading: Ezra 4; Psalms 113, 127; Luke 9
Then he told them what they could expect for themselves: “Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You’re not in the driver’s seat—I am. Don’t run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I’ll show you how. (Luke 9:23 MSG)
We used to watch a series on the National Geographic channel called “The Dog Whisperer.” Cesar Millan, the Dog Whisperer, is a master at training unruly dogs to behave properly. The key, Cesar says, is that the dog must understand who is leading and who is following. Once that’s clear in the dog’s mind, the rest is just detail.
Jean and I love to take our dog Jake out in the desert east of town for walks in the juniper forest. In the quiet and isolation of the desert, I can take him off the leash and he can run and sniff and chase rabbits (He’s never caught one, but he never gives up trying!) and we all have a great time. We usually walk about two miles and he covers at least four.
But with all the running and sniffing and chasing Jake does, I’m actually leading and Jake knows it. If I think he’s wandering too far afield, or if I lose sight of him, I whistle and he’ll come running back and walk at my side for a ways and then he’s off again! It’s really interesting if he loses sight of us! He almost goes into panic mode until he finds us! Then he tends to stay especially close for awhile.
I think it’s pretty much the same in the functional relationship between Jesus and me. Once I’m clear in my heart and mind that he’s leading and I’m following, we can work out the details. It’s just that I keep forgetting who’s leading! I don’t mean to forget. I just get busy running around and start acting like I’m in charge.
In a way, it would be easier if he just kept me on the leash! But he wants me to have some freedom just like I want Jake to have some freedom. That freedom puts the responsibility on me to be sure I know where the Master is leading and stay close.
Father, I want to learn to walk with you without having to be on a leash. I want to let Jesus lead. I purpose today to pay close attention to where you go and to follow diligently. Amen.