You Follow Me!
In the final chapter of the Gospel of John Jesus says to Peter that he is going to die in a very specific way. Here is how it is written: “‘Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were younger, you used to gird yourself, and walk wherever you wished; but when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will gird you, and bring you where you do not wish to go.’ Now this He said, signifying by what kind of death he would glorify God.” (John 21:18-19b NAS)
Peter, being Peter looks over at John and asks what is going to happen to him? Jesus basically says, “if I want him to live forever what do you care?” Then He says very forcefully, “You follow Me!” Jesus was not going to give into the idle curiosities of Peter nor should He.
This is a good passage to chew on for young men and women who seek the discipleship of older men and women in the church. If you are discipled by a person who has others he is discipling there becomes a great temptation to wonder what is going on in their lives and interactions. But frankly, it is not any of your business unless the one discipling you chooses to tell you.
This was a lesson I had to learn when I was younger and it is a lesson many others need to learn as well. There is something in our nature to cause us to consistently croon our necks around trying to see if what the other guy is getting is the same as what we are getting. How much time, what kind of conversations, books being read, opportunities offered, etc. But behind all of this is envy and the fear of being left out.
If you desire to be discipled you need to be ready to follow, that is the essence of discipleship. It means you stop worrying about what anyone else is doing and just be busy with what you are to be doing, reading, practicing, and hearing.