Lead. Follow. Starting with two words can only mean another conflicted post. It was Sunday night, and I was sharing (read whining) to my small group about how I seem to be incapable of establishing a quiet time with God into my routine. My well-meaning friends offered up wonderful suggestions on what I could do to incorporate what I expressed was a very important, and yet missing, part of my life. I nodded in agreement and they smiled with empathy. I heard words like choices, drive time, what about this, how about that.
Then someone said, “Well, what would you do if God were with you every day?”
“What are you talking about? God is with me every day! I jump out of bed and grab Him and away we go! I take God along with me.”
The trouble was that I was not allowing space in my day for the two of us to just sit together – in quietness. My whining ended about the time the host looked at his watch and suggested we pray. I took the hint and vowed to do better next week. I have since thought about my take along God.
A friend of mine is experiencing the joy of her first grandchild. We talked once about the expectations her daughter had of life with a new baby. She said that her baby was going to be a “take along” baby, which I took to mean, the baby would go where they went and do what they do. I had babies like that, too. In fact, I think most of us would really prefer that. We have our plans, our busy schedules, our goals for the day and nothing should stand in our way or slow us down. It’s a great idea in theory but difficult in reality, as I have found out.
So here I am, jumping out of bed, grabbing God by the hand and saying, “Let’s go! You are going to be a take along God!” And then I’m off! I’m leading…or rather, I am pulling God along with me. Just like an impatient child who sees the lights of Disneyland within reach and is pulling her father behind to hurry him into Tomorrowland. (How many times have I dragged my Heavenly Father into my Tomorrowland? Ah, but that is definitely for another time.)
When I thought about my take along God this morning, the picture was clearly of me as that child. And I imagined how many times I have darted into the treacherous roads of life and my Heavenly Father has held tight to my hand to keep me from danger. And yet, I still want to lead ~ why is that? Pride.
I have a busy day. I have important things to do. I don’t have time to stop. I know what’s best for me. I’m a leader.
So, how’s that been working out for me? Not so good.
This week I made an extra effort to start my day in quietness with my Father. I didn’t execute perfectly, and I am okay with that. But when I did, it was right. When I did, I had an extra measure of peace and an appropriate perspective about life. When I did, I was willing to follow and let God lead. My God is still a take along God, and frankly, I don’t recommend anyone leave home without Him ~ He’s better than any credit card you have in your wallet. Life when I lead…pricey. Life when God leads…priceless. What about you, are you leading or following God?
It is the LORD your God you must follow, and him you must revere. Keep his commands and obey him; serve him and hold fast to him. Deuteronomy 13:4