Who is following you, and what do they see?

Jean Newell, Associate Pastor, Sun Lakes United Methodist Church

I was taking care of my four-year-old grandson Sebian. It was just the two of us at home. Sebian had been busy with his stuff; I’d been busy with mine — including washing clothes. I had picked up a pile of clothes, carried them through the house and when I got to the washer and dryer, I dumped the clothes on the floor so I could take the dry clothes out of the dryer and transfer the load in the washer to the dryer. I was so focused on what I was doing that it wasn’t until I turned around that I realized that Sebian was standing right behind me.

“Are you following me?” I asked as I chuckled to myself.

“Well,” he said as he lifted his hands up and shrugged his little shoulders, “You are my grandma!”

“That I am!” I answered as I scooped him up and gave him a hug and a kiss.

Sebian was watching me when I least expected it. For many of us who believe in Christ, we like to think that we are following Christ by trying to live our lives as He would have us live, but do we stop to think about those who may be following us?

How many times have we been in a hurry at a store, and we charge out the door, ignoring a mother with children trying to get in? Was someone following us then? What did that person see? Did that person see a follower of Christ who helped the mother or someone who was intent upon taking care of their own business? How many times have we been cut off in traffic and verbally expressed our displeasure with the other driver while our passengers listened to what we had to say? What did they hear? Did they witness a follower of Christ who refrained from an angry response or someone who allowed anger to take control?

As we enter into Lent, may we spend time not only thinking about the Christ who calls us to follow, but may we stop and think about who is following us when we least expect it. What do they see? What do they hear?

Is the Christ they see in us someone they’d like to follow?