Beware What You Trust
By Grace Andrews of Independence, MO, USA
Commit your way to the Lord; trust, and God will act. God will make your vindication shine like the light, and the justice of your cause like the noonday. —Psalm 37:5–6 NRSV, adapted
Did you play “follow the leader” when you were a child? We have many experiences from early childhood that involve learning by following. We learn about driving a car by watching our parents drive. Then we get behind the wheel and follow their directions. We hear parents remind their children to follow closely while they shop.
We watch geese fly overhead in perfect formation as they follow the lead goose. Life is full of following the leader. But which leader do we follow? If our vision is clear and we trust in the Lord, we will not be led astray.
A mother goose recently laid her eggs by a pond near us. She sits on the nest every day while the gander swims around and keeps watch, flapping his large wings and squawking at anyone who dares to come near. We’re anxious to see the little goslings that will follow the mama wherever she goes. But, I wonder, how do they know to follow her?
I heard about a driver who lost his way while driving in a blinding snowstorm. When truck tail lights appeared in front of him, he happily followed them because they were all he could see. He made every turn close behind the truck. After many turns, he knew he must be getting close to some destination. He almost crashed into the truck when it suddenly stopped. A man got out, walked to the car, and asked, “Why are you following me?”
He explained he couldn’t see the road and thought he could follow the tail lights to a safe place. The truck driver said, “My friend, you’re following a snow plow. I was clearing this parking lot.”
We want to be sure we are following the one whom God chose to lead us—Jesus Christ.
Prayer for Peace
Tender Shepherd, when life’s snowstorms or glittering distractions blind us, speak to us and we will follow. When we cannot hear you above the din and trivia of life, rest your Spirit on us and we will turn to your peaceful presence.
Spiritual Practice: Voices of God
What is the voice of God saying to us? Do we hear the whispers of God’s longing for shalom, God’s dream of beauty and wholeness for all creation? Do we hear the “voice” of God calling to us in faces and eyes, in the sounds of suffering and joy, in scripture and sacred word, in tears and laughter, in silence and noise? Spend a few moments reflecting on when and how God’s voice speaks to you. When did you first feel called to join God in the pursuit of peace and justice? How does the call of shalom continue to come to you through the many “voices” of God?
Today, God, I will make sure I have a worthy destination in mind before I follow anyone.