Pastor’s Pen: Follow in the path He has chosen for you

Mary Henderson from Newtownabbey Methodist Mission and her dog, Ollie.
Mary Henderson from Newtownabbey Methodist Mission and her dog, Ollie.
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By Mary Henderson and Ollie

Hi my name is Ollie and I am a Cavalier King Charles.

I recently celebrated my first birthday. My owner is fantastic. She keeps me safe, warm and gives me the best of food, not forgetting my toys.

One main thing that is so important in my life (so I am told) is being an ‘obedient’ dog, especially for my owner. Teaching me basic obedience is the perfect beginning of my education (so I am told). A dog that is well behaved can be trusted - so they say. I will be a more welcomed member of the community and can be taken just about anywhere.

To be obedient I must listen carefully to certain ‘commands’ such as sit, stay, fetch, wait, no and come. Guess what my favourite command is. ‘COME’. You see I love to play in the garden. What I love to hear is the word ‘COME’. It means I am going for a walk, play time or more importantly meal times. I might even get a treat.

My owner also calls me by my name which I now know very well.

I like the word COME. It is a recall word. It brings me straight back to my owner. The one who loves, cares, understands and wants the very best for me. I feel safe and secure.

I know my owner would want you to know about the word COME that the Lord Jesus used to the fishermen by the lake while they were doing a hard day’s work.

Jesus however had a much better plan for their lives. They first heard the word COME and then responded immediately by following him. It wasn’t easy for them. They hadn’t known Jesus very long but long enough to want to follow him and be close. They would enter into unknown territory and a spiritual journey that would mean total trust in Him.

They left behind the familiar to embark upon the unfamiliar. It was the right thing, for Jesus is walking up to you today. He reaches out his hand to you and says ‘Come, follow me’ and I will make you...’ He wants you to come with your burdens, failures, brokenness, weariness, sadness, guilt, fears, hurts and much more.

What is your response? Do you make excuses? Hesitate? Another time Lord, another place or another day, Lord. It’s inconvenient or bad timing. Too big of an interruption.

In responding to His call you can experience forgiveness, healing, freedom, peace and much more. Not least you will experience the power He gives to follow in the path He has chosen for you.

Step out today in faith, not relying on your feelings, but on the fact that Jesus laid down His life for you. How can you do anything less?