Posted by: pastormikemcdowell | February 24, 2015

February 24, 2015 “Footprints In The Snow”

“You are My friends if you do what I command you.” (John 15:14)

Good Morning Everyone! This is the Day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it!

Living as I currently do in sunny Florida, I have been relatively unscathed by the ravages of this current winter season. Not so for my family and friends in other parts of the country. From Texas to Maine…from Colorado to the Carolinas, snow, ice, and record-breaking cold have been the rule of the day. Even portions of mighty Niagara Falls have been frozen over! Now that’s cold! Along with the bitter temperatures, significant snowfall has blanketed much of the nation. In New England alone, over seven feet of snow has fallen. Though I never remember it snowing that much in Pennsylvania at one time, there were winters when the snow did accumulate. When I was little, I remember slogging through the snow that was at least up to my knees. Admittedly, I was a lot shorter then, which means that about six or seven inches of accumulation was enough to make walking through it a more daunting task for me. So I would follow in my father’s footsteps, as his boot prints made made traversing through the frozen precipitation far less difficult for me. Dad’s big footprints made the journey more manageable and fun for me as he led the way.

Following in Christ’s footsteps through life’s snowdrifts are analogous to my childhood memories. So long as I faithfully trod where he leads, I don’t get stuck and mired down by life’s challenges. He is my friend, and I am glad to follow him. Sometimes, people try to shortcut. Instead of walking where he has walked, people try to travel more generally where he is leading. I have often heard it said of someone, “He (or she) is a good Christian man (or woman). What is meant by that is that the individual in question is generally a moral person by societal standards and meets the accepted criteria of decency. That is all well and good, but not the same as being a follower or a friend of Jesus Christ. Jesus sets the criteria. His condition of true friendship is one of obedience to him in every area of life…to follow in his footsteps stride for stride. The great preacher Dwight L. Moody defined the relationship we are to have with Christ like this:

“A rule I have had for years is: to treat the Lord Jesus Christ as a personal friend. His is not a creed, a mere doctrine, but it is He Himself we have.” 

Living “a good Christian life” is not the same as being a follower of Christ. Stating allegiance to Christ is not the same as following in his footsteps day by day. Being a Christian is being in fellowship with Christ through prayer, obedience, and submission. It means placing your feet in his great footprint each and every day. Then, and only then, can you be considered his follower and his friend. Such is the cost, and the reward, of true discipleship and real friendship. Let’s pray!

O Lord Jesus; Your friendship is paramount in my life. Only in following where You rightly lead do I make it safely through the storms of life. It is my heart’s deep desire to have you call me friend. May I faithfully, joyfully follow You in this new day and each day I live. This I do pray in Your blessed Name. Amen!

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