“Where you go, I'll go; Where you stay, I'll stay; When you move, I'll move; I will follow you. Who you love, I'll love; How you serve, I'll serve; If this life I lose, I will follow you.”

Chris Tomlin

This is the essence of what it means to be a disciple. Disciples are students; they follow their teacher and their teacher’s teaching.

In a culture where independence is prized above all else, it’s easy to believe that being a follower is a bad thing. Truthfully? It all depends on who you choose to follow.

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When the people set out from their tents to cross over the Jordan, the priests bearing the ark of the covenant were in front of the people. Now the Jordan overflows all its banks throughout the time of harvest. So when those who bore the ark had come to the Jordan, and the feet of the priests bearing the ark were dipped in the edge of the water, the waters flowing from above stood still, rising up in a single heap far off at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan, while those flowing toward the sea of the Arabah, the Dead Sea, were wholly cut off. Then the people crossed over opposite Jericho. While all Israel were crossing over on dry ground, the priests who bore the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood on dry ground in the middle of the Jordan, until the entire nation finished crossing over the Jordan.

Joshua 3:14-17

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The ark of the covenant was a container that held the presence of the Living God. It was a reminder to the Israelites that God was physically present with them on their journey. As the Israelites prepared to cross the flooded Jordan River, the ark of the covenant went first, and the raging river stopped flowing so they could cross on dry land.

When faced with a huge problem, how often do we rush right in and drown in the consequences of our choices? As disciples, we are called to follow, and sometimes, that means waiting. God, not the Israelites, was the one who could dry up the river; sometimes the answer to our problems lies outside of ourselves.

Pray before acting, and listen for God’s response. Seek advice from those who are wiser (and there’s always someone wiser to be found). Know that you are not alone.

Katie Day

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Be with me, God, in whatever I am facing today. Give me the wisdom to make good decisions, and the wisdom to ask for help. Amen.

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An ancient Jewish saying goes like this:

“May you be covered in the dust of your rabbi.”

It was meant as encouragement to be a good disciple: follow your rabbi, your teacher, so closely that you get dusty from the dirt he kicks up as he walks. Follow not only what he teaches but also where he goes and what he does.

May you, today, respond to God’s call to follow.

May you be covered in the dust of the Rabbi.

Katie Day

Katie Day is Associate Pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Monterey. She lives with her husband Kevin, cat Fred, dogs Lola and Mr. Wiggins, and a variety of coyotes, bobcats, and deer in the surrounding woods. She loves macaroni and cheese and is bad at math.

Who Will Learn His Ways and Follow Him

Ken Medema

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