Follow Me,” or Fasting and Feasting

Read Luke 5:27-39

My desire is to give a very simple message, so that the youngest Christian may be helped and encouraged. The burden of it will be found in the two words addressed by the Lord to Levi— “Follow Me.”

First let me call your attention to three words found in the 27th verse: “After these things.” Whilst we do not need to be ingenious about the words of Scripture, yet we must ever bear in mind that every one of them is Divinely inspired, and without straining a point, or the exercise of ingenuity, these three words contain a deep meaning, and it is the failure to recognize the truth which they convey, that leads to so much sorrow and disappointment.

Let me explain. Before this point is reached in the chapter three things come out which lead up to it and explain the words, “After these things.”
  (1) Self discovered.
  (2) The need met.
  (3) The power given.

These three things indicate the soul-history which must first be experienced before the Lord can say to any one of us, “Follow Me,” or before we can be in a position to respond. The failure to recognize this leads unconverted people, who know neither the second nor the third, and who only partially know the first, to attempt to serve the Lord, and the result is absolute and entire failure. On the other hand, many Christians, who know the first and the second, but fail to recognize the true meaning of the third, attempt to follow the Lord more or less in their own strength, and that again is weariness, disappointment and vexation. Let us look briefly at these three points.

(1) SELF DISCOVERED

The first incident is that of Simon Peter. The Lord takes the loan of his boat and preaches out of it. Then He tells Simon to launch out into the deep, and let down his nets for a draught. Simon responds that they had toiled all night and taken nothing, but at His word he would let down the net. This done, a great multitude of fishes was enclosed so that the net brake, and the ships began to sink.

What effect had this upon Simon? Surely the Divine character of the Person in whose presence he found himself must have been forced upon him with overwhelming power. Did he think of Psalm 8, where the Son of man has power over “the fish of the sea”? (See verse 8).*
{*NOTE.—It is not a little remarkable that when the times of the Gentiles come in, and Nebuchadnezzar—the head of gold—has power given to him, that power included the beasts of the field and the fowls of the heavens, but not the fish of the sea. Power over “the fish of the sea” is alone given to the Son of man. In the gospels the number of incidents in connection with the fishes of the sea is striking, and intended to clearly indicate who the Son of man was.}

At any rate, he found himself consciously in the presence of a Divine Person, and he found himself utterly unsuited to that presence. Have you ever experienced this? Have you ever been in the Divine Presence, and there learnt yourself? To the natural man it is an awful place. When God spoke in the vision of the ladder to Jacob, that guilty sinner cried out on awaking, “How dreadful is this place! this is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.” Yet this was Jacob’s Bethel. Will a sinner, as a sinner, ever be happy in God’s presence? Nay, heaven would be to such more intolerable than hell.

Simon Peter felt all this, and cried out, “Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” It is here more the conviction of his state than of his action, for he says, “I am a sinful man, O Lord.” He was discovered in the secret springs of his being.

Yet in this exposure Simon was attracted, which is ever the case when the person is the subject of a divine work, and not merely convicted by the natural conscience, which leaves the will and affection untouched. This is illustrated by the difference in conduct between Simon in this incident and the Pharisees in John 8.

They found a woman in the very act of adultery, and brought her to the Lord. In this they were influenced not so much by a burning zeal for righteousness, but rather by an intense desire to oppose the Lord. And this is ever the true attitude of religiousness of the flesh towards Him. How could the exponent of grace maintain the law? they thought. Unrighteous grace, we know, is no real grace at all.

The Lord replied to them, “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her;” in other words He indicated that the executor of the law must be himself free from its curse. Alas! they were exposed, but, unlike Peter, not attracted. The light was too powerful. Their faulty characters could only be maintained in the darkness. Bent upon maintaining them, they went out. In other words, they took upon themselves the responsibility of departing from the light, from Christ; whereas Peter, truly exposed, and in a different and deeper way than the Pharisees, for no confession escaped their lips, put upon the Lord the responsibility of departing, for he said, “Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” Blessed be His name, He never turns away from need, and so it is here.

Yet such was the attraction with Simon as with James and John, his partners, that when they got to land, they forsook all and followed Him.

In the next incident we get

(2) THE NEED MET

It is that of the man “full of leprosy,” who cried to the Lord, “If Thou wilt, Thou canst make me clean.” If Simon was “sinful,” the leper was “full of leprosy.” The cleansing of the leper is illustrative of how the sinful state is met. Again it is a question of state, leprosy illustrating more the inward corruption of the flesh in its working.

He was conscious of his need, conscious that no one had power but the Lord to meet that need, but lacked assurance as to His willingness. Hence his earnest cry, “Lord, if Thou wilt, Thou canst make me clean.” Again we find the ever-ready response of the Lord to the cry of need, “I will; be thou clean.” Immediately, at that wonderful word, the leprosy departed.

So when we find ourselves discovered in the secret springs of our being as sinful, leprous, we likewise learn this blessed fact, that the One who discovers us is the One who can meet our need. Of course the type fails, for while the leprosy departed from the man, yet we are never free in our mortal bodies of sin in the flesh. Thank God, all our sins are met by the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. Every working of the flesh in us has been met and judged in the awful judgment of the Cross. Nay, further, sin, the evil principle itself, has been condemned in the cross, set aside as before God, no longer recognized by Him, and believers are exhorted thus:“Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rom. 6:11). And the Lord could say unto His disciples, “Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you” (John 15:3). Thank God our need is most fully met, but as long as we are here we shall need a power to practically give effect to the grace of God, so that in our walk and ways we may be free from sin and living unto God. This we get in the third incident.

(3) THE POWER GIVEN

If sinfulness is exemplified in the leprous man, powerlessness is shown forth in the palsied man. Put the two cases together, and you got a very full idea of what a sinner is. His sinfulness exposes him to the judgment of God; his powerlessness shuts him up entirely to His mercy, for he has no resource in himself.

How wonderfully the need is met! Suppose God stopped short at the forgiveness of sins, what a horrible plight the forgiven one would still be in. Strip the crab apples off a crab-apple tree, it is as much a crab-apple tree as ever, and not all the skill in the world can make it produce other than crab apples, save by the introduction of new life. Forgive a man his sins, and go no further, and he is still a sinner, his nature unchanged, without any ability but to give effect to his sinful nature. In the case before us, both sinful Simon and the man full of leprosy are represented, when the Lord said to the palsied man, “Thy sins are forgiven thee.” But in this incident we get a big stride forward, for two things were prominent, (1) sins forgiven, (2) power communicated. And it is this second thing that is so important. It is intensely interesting to see how it came out. The Scribes murmured, “Who is this which speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins, but God alone?” The Lord answered them in so many words by enunciating a very important principle, viz:that He demonstrates His ability to forgive sins, by His ability to free the sinner from the consequences of his sin. I don’t mean the physical consequences of sin, but the moral consequence, which is absolute powerlessness to walk for God. No man can see that another has got his sins forgiven, but the demonstration of it—ability to walk for God—can be seen. How often this is borne witnessed to by an unbeliever, when he says that he believes so-and-so is converted, because his life is altered.

So the Lord said to the palsied man, “Arise, and take up thy couch, and go into thine house.” Immediately the man rose. Not only is his need met, but power is given. “He . . . took up that whereon he lay, and departed to his own house, glorifying God.” In other words, that which carried him, he carried. What a demonstration of power!

This is an illustration of the fact that the only power the believer has lies in the Holy Ghost. Without the Spirit of God the Christian would be without power. And when he grieves the Spirit and walks in the flesh, in that proportion he falls into the power of the enemy. But blessed be God, “Greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world” (1 John 4:4).

Thank God, our sins before God are met at the Cross, and our state there condemned and set aside, and our powerlessness is met by the gift of the Holy Ghost, thus setting us free from ourselves, and enabling us to walk for God. Oh! the joy when all this is learnt in the soul. Free from sin’s penalty by the work of Christ on the Cross, free from sin’s power by the indwelling of the Spirit of God, and free from sin’s presence when the Lord comes.

There is always an answer on the part of the Spirit of God to the work of Christ: The work in us by the Spirit always answers to the work for us on the Cross. For instance, are we justified? Then “the free gift came upon [literally, toward (N.Tr.)] all men unto justification of life” (Rom. 5:18). Did we once yield our members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity? Then we are exhorted to “yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness” (Rom. 6:19). Was the palsied man forgiven? Then “he took up that whereon he lay, and departed to his own house, glorifying God.”

I remember a young lady coming to me in great distress. She was a Christian, and had tried hard to follow the Lord, but it always ended in bitter failure and disappointment. She confessed she had an irritable temper, and there were many other things, which made her very miserable and dissatisfied with herself. She had tried to improve, but all was in vain.

“Now, Miss Moore,” I said, “if you could thoroughly control your temper, and get all the other troubles right, would you then be satisfied with yourself?”

With face brightening up at the prospect she replied that she would. I then told her that her present condition was infinitely more desirable than that. She was dissatisfied WITH SELF—that was far better than being SELF-satisfied. She would have been satisfied with an improved Miss Moore, but that would never do for God.

Flesh will be flesh, be it cultivated or otherwise. “Of thorns men do not gather figs, nor of a bramble bush gather they grapes” (Luke 6:44). I told her the mistake lay in looking for self-improvement and self-satisfaction, and that God wanted her eye off self altogether and on Christ, and that He wanted Christ to come out of her in her walk and ways.

Yes, we want an object outside ourselves, and it is by being occupied with Christ that we are enabled to walk straight down here. Do you think that the ploughman would ever make a straight furrow if be kept his eye on his own feet, or on the plough, or even on the horses? No; he must have an object, say a tree, at the end of the field. Keeping his eye steadily fixed on it, a straight furrow will be the result. And the power—the Holy Ghost—is given to set us free from ourselves by engaging us with Christ, and thus Christianity becomes a very simple and blessed thing to our souls.

Now we come to the two words I wish to draw your special attention to:
  “FOLLOW ME.”

If we know the three things we have described, viz.: (1) self discovered, (2) the need met, and (3) power given, we are in a position “AFTER THESE THINGS” to hear the Lord saying to us in commanding power, “Follow Me.” We then have ears to hear. We are freed from self-occupation, and have a power enabling us to respond to the Lord’s call.

It is indeed blessed above all the babel of tongues, the shibboleth of sects, the cry of parties, to hear the soul-absorbing commanding words, “Follow ME.” We may quarrel about doctrines, but how can we differ about Him? In following Him we find rest to our souls, and learn that His yoke is easy and His burden light. As we often sing:
 “Jesus, Thou art enough
    The mind and heart to fill;
  Thy patient life—to calm the soul;
    Thy love—its fear dispel.”

Levi was sitting at the receipt of custom when these two words reached his ears. There is nothing much more detaining than money. What is detaining you? What hinders any of us from following the Lord heartily, earnestly, and thoroughly? Each heart alone can give the answer. But in the incident before us Levi responded. The call met with a response. The Lord’s words were more powerful than money. We read, “And he left all, rose up, and followed HIM.”

Again note how exact is the wording of Scripture. If I went to the door, and beckoned someone to follow me, the first thing he would do would be to rise up, and then follow me. But in Levi’s case we find an action prior to his rising up, and without the previous action I venture to say the weight of his money-bags would have tied him to his seat. We read, “He left all, rose up, and followed Him.” If the second action was physical, the first was certainly moral. What power those two words, “Follow Me,” must have carried when they produced such an inward operation as to free Levi in his spirit from all that would detain him, so that it was an easy thing for him to rise up and follow the Lord. Had he tried to rise before he had left all, the strings of his money bags would have held him down, but having left all they had no more detaining power than spiders’ webs. I would urge upon the young Christians, Let it be all for Christ. Let every detaining link be broken. Be out-and-out for Him. He is worthy.

  “But must I leave my business?” says one; and “must I leave my wife or husband?” asks another.

  “Yes, let every link be broken, and then take up your links as from HIM, and hold them as His steward. He may call you from your fishing nets, like Peter, or the receipt of custom, like Levi. Are you ready to be a fisher for men? Or He may leave you in your business, and then, if you follow the Lord, you will be a faithful business man. I don’t say a successful one necessarily, but a faithful one. I met a Christian in the States, and afterwards saw him in this country. He said, “I now know why I came to England, and I am returning to America having learnt a valuable lesson.” “What have you learnt?” I enquired. “I have found,” said he, “that I must run my business for Christ.” If you do all for Christ, be you in an exalted or humble condition, it will put the beauty of holiness on all you do, whether it be cleaning boots or scouring pots and pans. You have heard of the servant girl, who, when asked how she knew she was a Christian, replied, “I sweep under the mats now.”

Again, if the husband puts Christ and His interests first the wife will be the gainer. The Ephesian husband is the best of all husbands, loving his wife, nourishing and cherishing her, even as the Lord nourishes and cherishes the church.

These are days of self-seeking, money-grabbing, ease-loving—days of growing indifference and Laodicean lukewarmness. May this be a trumpet call to your soul, dear young believer. The Lord says to you, “Follow Me.”

FASTING OR FEASTING

Now I will say a little on fasting. Levi made a feast for the Lord, and the Scribes and Pharisees murmured. There are always murmurers when Christ is made much of. Even the disciples themselves murmured when Mary would lavish her all upon the blessed Lord. Well she had the luxury of being defended by Him. In the case before us the Pharisees asked, “Why do the disciples of John fast often, and make prayers, and likewise the disciples of the Pharisees; but thine eat and drink?’ The Lord replied to them, “Can ye make the children of the bridechamber fast, while the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, and then shall they fast in those days.”

Those days have come, and in following Christ there must be fasting. Who fasted like the Man of Sorrows, and are we not called to follow Him? Well, rest assured of this that the more thoroughly we follow the Lord, the more glad and joyous we shall truly be. Who had deeper joys, joys of communion, than the Man of Sorrows? Who fasted like Him, and who feasted like Him? The Man of Sorrows, and the Man of Joy, no sorrow like His, no joy like His!

What is fasting? you may enquire. It is not abstaining from sin. Be clear as to that. There must be no quarter given to sin, be it the sin of murdering the precious hours God gives us in things that can only weaken and defile, or by sinning in any other way.

What is fasting? Physical fasting is the abstinence from food for a time. Now food is right. God gives us all things richly to enjoy. Food is necessary for the due sustenance of the body, but a man may abstain from food for a time with a benefit in view. But physical fasting is doubtless typical of moral fasting.

There are many things a Christian might do, which are not sin, but which he abstains from. We must be separate from the world, which rejected and crucified our Lord, and in being separate fasting is involved. The worldling is feasting today, but alas! will fast throughout eternity. The Christian fasts to-day, but will feast throughout eternity. It seems scarcely fair or righteous that a Christian should feast in both worlds. In fact, God will not allow it.

Surely no true Christian but will respond to all that is involved in the Lord’s call. The Bridegroom is not here, and it is advisable that we should fast. I know a Christian who spends some hundreds a year in the Lord’s work. Someone asked him how he could spend so much. “Well,” he said, “my friends have their horses and carriages, I can do very well without such things, and the Lord’s interests can be helped thereby.” Who could say there was any harm in his having a carriage and horses? He fasted in that way. Two lads were converted in Edinburgh a few weeks ago. Some time after their mother said to them, “What about the football now, boys?” “We have stopped that, mother,” was the reply. There surely could be no harm in kicking a ball, but in this case it involved membership in a club, and association with the ungodly, and fasting was their true attitude in the matter. In a thousand and one ways fasting meets the Christian, but oh! the compensation there is in following the Lord.

One important principle I should like you to get a good grasp of, and that is, that just in proportion as you fast externally, you will feast internally. Who is so truly happy as the out-and-out follower of the blessed Lord? He does not ask us to wait for the feasting till we get to heaven, but He has given us the earnest of His Spirit, the earnest of what is to come even now, so that we can sing:
 “If even here the taste of heavenly springs,
  So cheers the spirit that the pilgrim sings,
  What will the sunshine of His glory prove?
  What the unmingled fulness of His love?”

The water that the Lord gives is in the believer, “a well of water springing up into everlasting life.” Are you a bubbling-over Christian? Yes, if you fast, because you love the Bridegroom. Away with monastic fasting! Away with legal restrictions! Do you love the absent Lord? Then it will be your joy to fast, and as you truly fast you will correspondingly rejoice.

Let me give you some examples from Scripture of fasting and feasting. Take the contrast between Abraham and Lot. Abraham lived in communion with God, and in separation from the world on the plains of Mamre. His tent and his altar proclaimed his character. Lot on the other hand chose his position by the sight of his eyes, and not by faith. He chose the well-watered plain of Jordan, “like the land of Egypt, as thou comest unto Zoar.” He hankered after Egypt (type of the world), and it influenced his choice. Next he “pitched his tent towards Sodom,” and finally he dwelt in Sodom itself, whilst his daughters contracted alliances with the sons of Sodom. No doubt the Sodomites applauded Lot’s liberality and broad-mindedness, and contrasted it with Abraham’s exclusiveness. Lot feasted whilst Abraham fasted. Lot also sat in the gate of Sodom. He occupied the seat of the magistrate. How often we hear people say, “We want Christian men to be our politicians and judges, to fill places of influence that they may be a power for good,” and Christians are deceived by it. I warn you not to be taken in by the specious lie of the devil. “They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world,” the Lord said to His disciples; and out-and-out separation for the Christian is the only path the Bible provides for. If a Christian accepts a place of influence in the world, he will find he cannot reform the world, but that he himself will be dragged down to its level. Be warned by Lot’s history. Beware of the first step towards the world. If you refuse the first step, you need never fear the second.

But time marched on, and the reaping followed the sowing, as surely as effect follows cause. Judgment fell on Sodom. The angels warned Lot as to the coming judgment. Roused at length, he passed on the warning to his sons-in-law. But alas! he was as one that mocked. His life did not give weight to his testimony. What he did robbed of its power what he said. He had taken root in Sodom, and now he urged his sons-in-law to flee. From the responsible and governmental side I believe Lot’s world-bordering cost his married daughters their lives. How awfully solemn! Oh! young believer, world-bordering is a very fatal thing. Refuse to marry an unbeliever at all costs, however amiable he or she may be, and however desirable it may be from certain standpoints. “Only in the Lord,” is the advice of Scripture as to marriage.

You know the sad end of Lot’s world-bordering. He fled from the city with his wife and unmarried daughters. His wife looked back to the city which her husband had taught her to love, and she became a pillar of salt. In a cave, drunk and deceived, Lot became the father by his own daughters of children, who in their turn were the progenitors of two of Israel’s bitterest foes—the Moabites and Ammonites.

Dear young Christian, whether would you be an Abraham or a Lot? You have your choice. Certainly Abraham was the more honoured and the happier man. Show me a wordly Christian and I will show you a miserable man. Such have enough of Christ to spoil them for the world, and enough of the world to keep them from enjoying Christ.

Some years ago I was asked to vote. I told the canvasser that I had voted, and had given all my vote to One, and that One the world had voted against, so that there was a distinct issue between me and the world. Understanding me, the canvasser urged, “What would happen if everybody were like you? How would things go on in the world?” I replied, “The very best thing for this poor world would happen. What would hinder that One, if all had voted for Him, coming to reign in righteousness,
  ‘To bid the whole creation smile,
    And hush its groan?’”

Again, Moses fasted. People might have thought him a great fool to have left the court of the Pharaohs, where God’s providence had placed him, and put himself alongside his afflicted brethren. One might naturally have reasoned that by remaining at the court he would have been able to ameliorate their condition. But no, he reasoned rightly and followed the wisest course. We read, “By faith Moses; when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter; choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompense of the reward” (Heb. 11:24-26). Where will you find a more honoured servant of God? He is mentioned all through Scripture. He it was who led the children of Israel through the wilderness. He it was who appeared on the mount of transfiguration with the Lord; and in Revelation we have his name linked up with the Lamb—“The Song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb.”

If he had stayed on in the court of the Pharaohs, what about his name in Scripture? I venture to say that not a line would have been devoted to his history. You might have seen at most his mummy in the British Museum, but that would have been little honour compared to his burial by God Himself. He fasted indeed, and God honoured him.

Take Samson now. Instead of fasting he feasted. He loved a Philistine, an enemy of God, and she wormed the secret of his strength from him, and betrayed it to his enemies. His long hair was a symbol of his separation, and that was the secret of his strength. Believe me, there must be a secret walk before God in your soul, or else you will soon be bereft of your power.

Having learnt his secret Delilah made him sleep upon her knees, and in that fatal slumber his locks were shorn off. When he awoke Samson thought to shake himself as usual. How lamentable is the comment of Scripture, “He wist not that the Lord was departed from him.”

And mark how retributive are the ways of God’s government. Samson used his eyes to lust after a woman of the Philistines. The Philistines put out his eyes. Bound with fetters of brass he ground corn in the prison house. What a lamentable end did Samson’s feasting have! True, in his death he slew more of his enemies than in his life, but he died with them. His sunset was like that of a sun setting behind dark and lurid clouds.

Take again the case of Daniel and his three companions. They refused the king’s meat and wine, they asked for pulse and water rather than defile themselves. For ten days the experiment was made, and in the end of that time “their countenances appeared fairer and fatter in flesh than all the children which did eat the portion of the king’s meat.”

I have always found that out-and-out Christians are the happiest. Their faces wear the brightest smile, and their hearts are always bubbling over with joy.

Lastly, let us take two New Testament cases. We instinctively think of that magnificent example of fasting—the apostle Paul. He denied himself natural joys. He never had after his conversion, so far as we know, an earthly home. We never think of him as having private interests at all. How he fasted! He could compare himself with others. “In labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft . . . In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness. Beside those things that are without that which comes upon me daily, the care of all the churches” (2 Cor. 11:23-28). What a record of self-denying toil! Yet at the end of his remarkable career, broken down till he could describe himself as Paul the aged, forsaken by the saints, all of Asia turned away from him, in prison, with no prospect but the executioner’s axe, he could write to the Philippian saints, “Rejoice in the Lord alway; and again I say, Rejoice.” Not one note of weariness, despondency or disappointment, but rather forgetting the things that were behind, he could say, “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:14). Blessed example of inward feasting and outward fasting.

What a contrast is poor Demas. The path was too narrow for him. Carnality narrowed it for him, for in reality, the divine path is that of truest enlargement. Paul had to write of him, “Demas has forsaken me, having loved this present world” (2 Tim. 4:10). Mark you, Paul did not say, “This present evil world,” as in Galatians 1:4; but this present world. We do not accuse him of anything flagrant. We do not suppose he even ceased to break bread, but alas! he was out of true fellowship with the Spirit of God. He settled down quietly in the course of things down here, and gave up to a great extent the good fight of faith, and after this we hear no more of him. Demas went to Thessalonica, and then the veil of silence falls. We doubt not but that he went to heaven, but what about earth? Now is our only chance of witnessing for Christ.

Dear young Christian, would you be an Abraham, a Moses, a Daniel, a Paul? You may, if not in gift or prominence, at any rate in faithfulness and fasting. Would you shun being a Lot, a Samson, a Demas? You may by being zealous of the first step of departure. “Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes.” Ah! it is the little foxes we have to be careful about, the innocent (?) pipe, the religious novel, the oratorio, the amiable but unconverted companion.

Lastly, in Luke 5 we are warned against outward patching and inward mixing. God does no patching or mixing. “No man puts a piece of a new garment upon an old. . . And no man puts new wine into old bottles,” the Lord said. With God it is new creation, not reformation. We are past mending as sinners, and now believers are looked at as having put on the new man. We are to be clothed in altogether a new character. It is not an improved or a mended self that will do for God, but it has to be Christ now, and nothing but Christ. Nor can new wine be put into old bottles. The old vessel is incompetent to receive the joy of the Holy Ghost. For that there must be a new vessel, new creation.

Thank God, the old unsatisfactory self is set aside by God, and we are entitled to set it aside in the power of the new, in the power of the Spirit.

May the two words —
  “FOLLOW ME”
sound in your ears and heart with more commanding power, with deeper permanence, with enduring results for His praise and glory, and your joy and reward, for His name’s sake.