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“Do not set foot on the path of the wicked or walk in the way of evildoers.”  Proverbs 4:14 NIV

One way to paraphrase today’s verse is simple, make sure you know who you are following.  We all follow someone. The people we follow, are the people we mimic. You know who you follow by who you imitate.  For instance, my husband and I follow Dave Ramsey.  Our financial plan is modeled after the plan he teaches, Financial Peace University. His financial plan is based on the Biblical principles for handling money.   We follow Dave. Dave follows Jesus. Therefore, following Dave means we’re also following Jesus.  Knowing who you follow is important to knowing what path you are on.

Charles Manson was a self-proclaimed Jesus who led a cult in California.  Members of his cult committed brutal murders, including Sharon Tate, a pregnant actress.  He ordered the murders. The people that followed him were walking in the way of an evildoer. Their lives were affected by who they chose to follow.  When his followers mimicked Manson, they were mimicking a mad man. Their actions are what tell their tale. Because of who they chose to follow, four of his followers were convicted of murder along with Manson.  Manson wasn’t following Jesus because he thought he was Jesus. We need to know who we’re following.

We need to know who we’re following.

Ultimately, the person to follow is Jesus.  As we follow Jesus, we meet other people on the same path as we are.  People who know they are sinners. People who are trying to put Jesus first in their lives, even though they falter by times.  People who know that in our deepest of messes, God still loves us. When we ask for forgiveness, He forgives. But as we follow Jesus, we also follow other people.  People who are ahead of us on our journey with God. People who have been through what we’re going through and are on the other side of it. Ordinary people who have daily walked with Jesus a little longer than we have.  People who know how to get back on track with Jesus after they falter.

When I first started my adult journey with Jesus, my friend Laura is who I followed to Him.  Friends since highschool, we had lost touch for a few years after college. When we reconnected, she had come to know Jesus.  He was a daily part of her life. I couldn’t have a conversation with her without talking about Jesus. The same is true 25 years later, I still can’t have a conversation with her without talking about Jesus.  Because Laura wanted to be like Jesus, she helped me start following Jesus. Who you want to be like is who you are following.  

Question of the Day:

Who do you want to be like?

Further Reading: Genesis 46:1-47:31 NIV, Matthew 15:1-28 NIV, Psalm 19:1-14 NIV, Proverbs 4:14-19 NIV

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