Once organized and ready to go, I drove over to the school, up the driveway, and parked in front of the church where preschool is held. Usually we would park in the parking lot and walk up the hill to the front doors, but today we were late and I presumed the other preschoolers had all been dropped off. Once I parked, I hopped down out of the jeep, helped Mason get down from his car seat, and shut the door. “Let’s go get your sister,” I said, walking to the other side of the car, assuming he was right behind me. He did not follow me. Instead, he remained planted right where I had set him.
As I began gathering Emery from her car seat, another car pulled up behind me. Yay! This meant I wasn’t the only one running late today. It was at this moment that I heard a little boy begin to cry and call to his Mimi. As he walked around the front of the car, I asked him why he was crying. He responded: “You left me. You were supposed to be taking care of me and you just left me.” I assured him that I had not “just left him,” but that he was supposed to follow me. I reminded him that I had asked him to follow me to the other side and he had not done that. When the other car pulled in, it had frightened him because he had lost sight of his Mimi—the one he was counting on to take care of him.
Throughout scripture we read examples of Jesus, as our Shepherd, inviting us to listen and follow Him. “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men” (Matthew 4:19 NKJV). He told the disciple who wanted to first go and bury his father to “Follow Me, and let the dead bury their own dead” (Matthew 8:22 NKJV). “Then Jesus said to His disciples, ‘If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me’” (Matthew 16:24 NKJV). “Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life’” (John 8:12 NKJV). The verse that lingered in my mind after Mason accused me of just leaving him was from John 10:27, “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.”
When we are told to follow Him and we fail to do so, we can find ourselves in uncomfortable situations. When we fail to keep up and lose sight of Him, it can become scary for us because we feel alone. When that happens, how do we respond? Do we, like Mason, accuse Him of leaving us? “You left me, Lord. You were supposed to be taking care of me and You just left me.” Did He leave us or did we fail to follow Him? When faced with that question, we must remember the promise He gave when He said: “And the LORD, He is the One who goes before you. He will be with you, He will not leave you nor forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed” (Deuteronomy 31:8 NKJV). We can always hold on to this fact from John 12:26: “If anyone serves Me, he must follow Me; and where I am, there will My servant be also. If anyone serves Me, the Father will honor him” (ESV).
Don’t lose sight of the One you are supposed to follow. Listen for His voice and when He says, "Follow Me" make sure you walk closely behind.