The ‘slap, slap’ of my five dollar flip-flops echoed off the dark facades of a sleeping neighborhood. The dog that normally barked did little more than raise it’s head to mark my passage, collar jangling softly before losing itself in the moan of a love-sick dove perched high in one of the ancient walnut trees lining the long street home.

I looked at my feet as I walked, at the earth, falling away beneath them. It had been a long day. Little sleep held hands with high demands and left me feeling emotionally drained and spiritually spent. My words of comfort and guidance to others sounded hollow to me that day. Shallow. Trite. Were these people leaving filled? Was I feeding them? Was God? If He was relying on me He was in trouble; the church, was in trouble! ‘No… I’m relying on Him,’ I thought, ‘and for Jesus’ sake He had better come through.’ But even these were weary thoughts. Old thoughts. Stale thoughts. These were the thoughts that mocked my faith.

I looked at my feet as I walked, at the earth, falling away beneath them. ‘I wish I could be walking after you right now Jesus,’ I thought to myself. ‘Just following your lead down some dusty old road. How simple life would be. How free. How pure. Just Jesus and I and a band full of buddies— talking. Walking.’

‘Slap, slap.’ ‘Slap, slap,’ go my leather sandals. I breathe dry air. It is the air of prophets, and priests, and kings of old.  And I am not in charge. “Follow me,” He said to Simon and Andrew, “and I will make you become fishers of men.” ‘Follow me,’ He says to me, ‘and I will make you become…’ what? What would He make me become? I still wasn’t sure of the what, but I embraced the how follow. I follow His lead. ‘We rest now,’ I imagined Jesus saying, and we’d rest. ‘Time to leave now,’ He’d say, so we’d leave. ‘Time to learn now’—and we’d learn. I wished I’d been there, following after Jesus so I’d never have to wonder if I was too far out in front of Him.

‘Jesus, I’m tired.’
‘Come to me,’ He said. So I came to Him, right there on some dusty old road.
What do you want me to do for you?’ He asked—‘What can I carry?’ So I told Him.
‘Jesus,’ I said, ‘I don’t have the words.’
‘The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. Let them dwell in you richly.’
‘Jesus,’ I said, ‘I don’t have the wisdom.’
'I am the wisdom of God,’ He said, ‘and in me is hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. To walk with me is to walk in wisdom.’
‘Jesus,’ I said, ‘I don’t have the confidence.’
‘The LORD will be your confidence,’ He said. ‘Be strong, and courageous!’
‘Jesus,’ I said, ‘just live through me until I’m only ever living through You!’
‘This I have begun already,’ He said with a smile, ‘and I will complete it. Surely I am with you always!’

And He turned, in my mind, and then stopped, looking back at me.
'Walk with me,' He said, and I followed, sandals slapping, followed Him, so He could keep on making me into exactly what I needed to be. So He could keep on making me into exactly what I hoped to God I’d be. I looked at my Jesus as I walked, at the fear, falling away beneath Him. And the dog never barked as we made our way past the ancient walnut trees, lining the long street home.


  1. thank you Josh..a reminder that it isn't in our much as we try and hold on!
    much love,

  2. You're welcome, Casey! It's always good for me to remember who's the real Leader. Talk to you soon.



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*Grace induces faith & Grace is obligated to faith ~