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Follow Me

An Axis Course On The Generosity Project

“Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” At once they left their nets and followed him. – Matthew 4:19-20 

Follow Me. These two words from Jesus have life-changing implications for anyone who accepts them. When Jesus first called the disciples, He was calling them to give up everything they had ever known. When He called, they immediately “left their nets and followed Him.” Their nets symbolized their careers, their ambitions, and their lives. Following Jesus is a call to let go. It is a call to die to ourselves and to find a new life in Christ. It is a call to live like Jesus.

God sent His Son to the world on a rescue mission… Jesus came for people. He came to bring hope to the hopeless. He came to seek and save the lost. When Jesus called the first disciples, He called them to join Him on His mission. When we decide to follow Jesus, it’s not just a ticket to Heaven, it’s an invitation to a journey with Him. So often, we minimize the call to follow Jesus to just reading the Bible, praying, or going to church. But the real call to follow Him means reaching out to those who are weak, to those who are looked down upon by society, and to those without hope.

Throughout the Gospels, we see Jesus constantly spending time with those in need. We see Him constantly telling others about the good news of the Gospel. If we are not actively spending our lives on behalf of others, then are we really following Jesus? New Testament scholar Scot McKnight puts it this way: “Those who aren’t following Jesus aren’t his followers. It’s that simple. Followers follow, and those who don’t follow aren’t followers. To follow Jesus means to follow Jesus into a society where justice rules, where love shapes everything. To follow Jesus means to take up his dream and work for it.”

Research: Where’s the Need?

At the end of this week, we’re going to encourage you to do something that makes a tangible difference in your community. Today, as preparation for that, do an internet search together as a family to find statistics about needs in your city, state, country, or the world––anything from information about local homelessness to global sex trafficking. Begin thinking about what pulls at your heart; what need are you most passionate about helping to meet? Make a list of five issues you want to get involved with, starting with what you feel most strongly about.

(Note: Each week has different spiritual content and activities, but the invitation to research and make a difference in your community remains the same. If you’ve already connected with a service opportunity through one of our other weeks, we encourage you to find ways to continue investing there.)

Activity: Spiritual Food

As we learn about compassion this week, a small thing we can do to develop the trait is to share an experience with others, helping us understand them and their daily lives a little better. To do this, today we challenge you to eat only beans and rice for 48 hours. 842 million people in the world do not have enough to eat. Many of these people eat only beans and rice––which may sound like scarcity to you, but to most of these people even beans and rice feel like a luxury. As you eat your meals of beans and rice over the next two days, think about how this is a special meal for so many people, and how many people don’t even get to eat this. Think about how sharing this experience with so many people across the world will help you develop compassion for those with whom you might otherwise have nothing in common.