As my mind goes back to a second grade class I taught last year, I’m reminded of something the students did as we walked back to class (from enrichment).
As we made the long trek back to the classroom, I walked ahead of the students (after making sure the line was in order). Further down the hall, I moved over to let a student walking in our direction pass. After doing so, I glimpsed back at my students to make sure they were walking as they should have been; they weren’t. The line had actually zigzagged, so I stopped and reminded them of how we’re supposed to walk in a line.
Soon after, I turned and walked on. But again, I had to move over to let someone pass…and again, the line shifted, so I had the whole class to stop completely, to see what was going on…why they were all over the hall.
“Why are y’all moving from side to side?” I asked them, seriously perplexed. None of them could answer me, but God did. Immediately, I was reminded that I was zigzagging to let others pass by. Because I was their leader, they were simply following my leading.
I was wowed (and tickled) at that revelation, and right then and there I thought about how awesome it would be if we’d follow God exactly the way the children were following me.
I also thought back to a favorite passage of mine, found in Ezekiel chapter 1, a portion of which speaks to this very sentiment—following the Leader.
In this chapter, Ezekiel gives us a vivid description of the cherubim – angels of God. The part of the passage that particularly catches my eye each time I read it is the angels’ posture. In verses 11b-12, it says: “And their wings were spread out above. Each creature had two wings, each of which touched the wing of another, while two covered their bodies. And each went straight forward. Wherever the spirit would go, they went, without turning as they went.” Jumping down to verse 20, we read, “Wherever the spirit wanted to go, they went…” (The wheels’ movement is also fascinating to me, as they went wherever the cherubim went, without turning, because the spirit that was in the cherubim was in them, too!)
Now, you may be wondering why I’m so taken with this passage and these verses, and how it all correlates with today’s message, so I’ll tell you. Like I stated above, the students who were following me that day did so carefully. Whatever I did, they did, too. In Ezekiel’s vision, the cherubim, too, followed their Leader carefully. As we see above, in verse 12, wherever the spirit would go, the angels went also, without turning as they went, without venturing their own way.
You may be wondering now: what’s so great about the cherubim following a spirit? However, this was no ordinary spirit (hence the capital L I keep using in leader). The cherubim were following the Holy Spirit—the Spirit of the living God.
As supreme beings of God, the angels could have chosen to go their own way (and would have been in rebellion, of course); nevertheless, they went wherever the Spirit wanted to go. They submitted themselves to the will of God.
In the same way that the angels followed God, their leader, we are to follow Him, because He’s our leader, too.
There will be times, many times, when our flesh tries to rise up, when it tries to convince us that we know what’s best for our lives, or better than God does about what we should or shouldn’t do, but we must resist those thoughts of our flesh (2 Corinthians 10:5) and walk in the Spirit of God (Galatians 5:16).
Sisters, there is nothing good about following our flesh’s desires, even if it appears that way. Flesh is what caused the fall in the Garden of Eden (which is still affecting the world today), and flesh is what has caused a many falls in our own lives also.
Therefore, let us not feel that the Spirit of God is attempting to hinder us or prevent us from the “good” things of this life and this world; but let us know and believe, wholeheartedly, that He desires to help us, to comfort us, and to guide us (into all truth) on this difficult path, until God calls us to Himself.
Follow His Leading!