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Viewpoint from Mark Crawford 06/01/2017 

Mark CrawfordMark Crawford
Identity Youth Project Team Leader

also published in the Yarmouth Mercury


Who or what do you follow?  Perhaps it's a sports team or a sports star.  Perhaps a celebrity couple or your favourite music artist. Maybe you follow all the latest news and gossip about a much-loved soap opera on TV.  What is happening in 'EastEnders' now by the way?

Whether we realise it or not, we are all followers.  Throughout history, people have followed empires, ideologies, revolutionaries and religions, both willingly and submissively; for better or worse.  We naturally align ourselves with particular people, pastimes, political views, and much, much more

dove leftToday, social media highlights this fact beautifully.  The principle of 'followership' is one that Facebook and Twitter promote heavily, not only to help people connect with one another, but also to help corporations and companies connect with potential purchasers.  Followership is big business

2000 years ago, a group of Magi (wise men) decided they too would give followership a try in a far less conventional sense.  A celestial event in the night sky signified the arrival of a new king.  Such was their intrigue and wonderment at this new bright star in the sky, that they travelled hundreds of miles to find this new baby boy, in order to worship him

Just as the Magi recognised the significance of Jesus’ arrival, so too the first disciples and followers recognised the importance of Jesus’ message and ministry.  30 years after Jesus’ birth, he called his first disciples to him saying "follow me", and throughout the New Testament, people point the way to Jesus and say "follow him!" 

Dove rightMany people see Jesus as nothing more than a curse word, or a meaningless figure who did some good stuff for people sometime in the past.  Others dismiss Jesus as being mythical or, worse still, irrelevant for us today.  But if Magi could see the significance of Jesus’ birth, perhaps we should look much more seriously at who this Jesus character truly is

Following Jesus can be tough.  It's not a free ticket to a trouble free life.  But it is worth it; it is so worth it!  Jesus came into this world so that we might be able to live life to its fullest potential.  And Jesus' call to us is the same today as it was 2000 years ago: "follow me" 

We welcome your thoughts and comments, posted below, upon the ideas expressed here

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tia (Guest) 12/01/2017 16:51
Great Post: Start to follow and be amazed where Jesus leads you.