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Follower

by | Jun 20, 2024 | Featured, Life Advice

FOLLOWER

DEFINITION: Someone that follows the opinions or teachings of another and imitates the other.

As someone who grew up in a time when social media was being created and continually growing, I joined each new platform as they were introduced. Once my accounts were established, my attention began to be drawn to how many followers I had. At this point, my idea of following someone or even being followed by someone only related to a number on my social media account. My days would be consumed with thoughts like these:

Has the number gone up today on my list of followers? Did I lose any followers? Who unfollowed me? Why did they unfollow me? Why did that picture get less likes than my others? What about that picture made people like it more? What can I do to be sure that I don’t lose any more followers? What do I need to do to make sure more people want to follow me?

Maybe these are some thoughts or questions that have filled your mind more times than you would like to admit like they have mine. Maybe these are some thoughts that have become like second nature to you and you don’t even realize that you are thinking them anymore.

If this is you currently or has been you before, I want to challenge you today to a question and share some truths that have truly changed the way that I walk through my life here on this earth in the midst of a social media driven culture.

What does it mean to be a true follower of Jesus Christ in today’s culture?

In the same way that my mind used to only think of social media when I thought about having followers or being a follower, my mind now immediately thinks of a couple of biblical synonyms to the word. I now hear the word follower and immediately think about discipleship and the beauty of truly, wholeheartedly following the most important person you could ever choose to follow. I now hear the word follower and immediately think about being an imitator of Christ in all that I do here on this earth.

The question we ought to be asking ourselves in today’s culture isn’t, “Do I have a big following on social media?” The question to ask ourselves is, “Who am I following above all else, and who am I pointing others towards in the midst of my pursuit?”

Now trust me, like many of the good things that we are offered in Christ, I know that this shift in mindset is much easier said than done! I know that this mindset is easy to desire, and a lot harder to put into action. I know this from my own walk with the Lord, and I want to encourage you today that believing in the truth of this new mindset is the first step in walking a life completely, sincerely, sold-out for the growth of the Kingdom of the Lord. Which, by the way, is a calling that each and every one of us is responsible for!

It is said in Matthew 28:18-20, “Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Y’all! That wasn’t just a suggestion that Jesus mentioned to His disciples before His time here on this earth with us was finished. That was the greatest commission that Jesus spoke for ALL of us as the body of Christ to get to step into! What a joy it is to know that the Lord has invited us into doing kingdom work alongside Him and that His spirit will be with us through it all until the very end of the age!

So now that we are here, we may be to the point that we can agree that our mindset needs a shift. We may be at the point that we believe that the question we should be asking ourselves is, “Who am I following above all else, and who am I pointing others towards in the midst of my pursuit?” So what next? How do I truly live out a life devoted to following Jesus Christ above all else?

In my personal experience, it takes realizing that this life is out of your control to begin to realize that you need God to lead you through it. Maybe you have been a believer of Jesus for a long time but you haven’t truly been following Him wholeheartedly. I want to encourage you that you are in the right place today to encounter God in a fresh way. Even if you have been running or settling for the lies of this world, you are always in the right place to have an encounter with Jesus Christ. He is simply waiting for you to turn your face to Him and surrender all. And ultimately, for us to truly follow Christ in a way that we become imitators of Him, we must set out to know Him intimately in order to discover how to become more like Him to the people around us.

What if instead of only thinking of our followers on socials for our own glory, we actually viewed each and every number in the same way that Jesus sees and loves them. What if we actually saw each and every number as a human being who can either be pointed towards or away from the cross through the stories, pictures, and captions we choose to post. What if we viewed social media as one of our greatest mission fields to go out and share the love of God with all people we come in contact with. For it is said in Romans 10:14-15,

“How, then, can they call on him they have not believed in? And how can they believe without hearing about him? And how can they hear without a preacher? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news.”

Lord, may the desires of our hearts be to be the hands and the feet who bring good news to a generation that is desperate for a savior to follow. Lord, may we not care if it costs us followers, as long as we are following YOU!

Lydia Walker is a member of LO Worship and an Area Representative for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes in Northeast Louisiana. She lives in Louisiana with her husband Reeves and her golden doodle, Teddy. Keep up with Lydia on Instagram @lrd.walker!

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