I remember the first time someone told me, “I’m a believer.” It was code for acknowledging God.
But over time, I have come to see this differently.
It’s one thing to say you “believe.” Even the devil believes there is a God. In the Bible, Satan tried to tempt Jesus and trip him up. Why? The enemy believed Jesus was the son of God, and wanted to bring him down.
Likewise, folks can quote Scripture and taunt others to “just forgive,” while they don’t even talk to their own kin or feel the need to make any changes.
It got me to thinking. I want my life, and my relationship with God, to be more than a superficial awareness.
Consider the difference between a believer and a follower.
Many times we wait on God to provide for us, telling him how we want others to behave and what we want to happen. Being a believer can be like being an Uber passenger, along for the ride and letting someone else drive us everywhere.
The problem is we’re not a participant. We seldom watch where we’re going or have an active interest in the view along the way.
When we follow someone, we’re taking mental notes, watching what they do and how. Following means imitating character and habits until they become our own.
Don’t get me wrong. It’s wonderful to have faith and believe it. But if we’re not taking this on the road, not putting it into practice, just watching God like he’s an interesting character, we’re missing out.
Some suggest God no longer performs Biblical miracles like turning water into wine, bringing the dead back to life and parting the Red Sea.
Well, friends, God hasn’t stopped delivering miracles. He isn’t tired, getting older or out of energy. Miracles are still all around us. When you’re out taking a walk, do you notice the beautiful flowers or the chirping birds? Do you feel the breeze on your face or witness the vibrant colors of the sunset?
And have you tried praying and had them answered? The friend who came through surgery, another reached a destination safely or that unexplained peace you felt even though your circumstances didn’t change.
No miracles, you say? Or are we just too distracted or buried in our devices that we missed them?
I’ve discovered that I need to be a follower. I must be a more active participant on this journey called life. That doesn’t mean I can’t have thoughts or opinions. Quite the opposite.
I just get the best possible guide to model my life after — and activate the GPS (in this case, God’s positioning system).
The Bible assures us that God has a plan for us. I don’t want to waste a minute so that when I leave this Earth, I will have used up all my potential.
Having faith is a step. Being a follower is a practice. Every. Single. Day.
It’s your choice. Will you believe or truly follow?
Phyllis Moore is a speaker, author and former reporter with the News Argus. She also has a YouTube channel, Phyllisophically Speaking.