Following the Son
Acres upon acres of sunflowers stretched on either side of the road as I drove through Kansas one summer. I remember studying the flower in one of my classes but seeing so many in one place created a deeper appreciation for this versatile plant. Many different sections of the flower are utilized including the leaves, seeds, and roots. These different parts produce dyes, oils, poultry food, soap, paints, lubricants, butters, and birdseed. The sunflower is an economic, as well as ornamental, marvel.
However, one aspect of this plant always fascinates me. The large flower head always faces the sun. It starts each morning pointing east and swivels through the day as it follows the sun across the sky, ending the day facing west.
Often, nature provides some the best lessons. Just as the sunflower follows the sun, so we too should follow the Son, Jesus Christ. As we do, our lives produce a rich harvest that benefits others.
In John 8:12, Jesus gave a promise to those who follow Him. “Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’”
Walking in the light allows us to see where we are going. However, in darkness, we easily stumble. The promise Jesus gives in John offers us such hope and comfort. As we follow His leading, we have the assurance of journeying in the light. But how do we know where He is leading if we can’t see or audibly hear Him?
We can all see His plan for us in His Word. Psalm 119:105 states, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Just as we saw in John, Jesus sheds light on the path we traverse. By studying the Bible, we learn what He wants us to do and how He wants us to do it. He illuminates our course, showing us step-by-step the way to go.
In addition to His Word, we also receive direction from the Holy Spirit. In John 16:13, Jesus told His disciples about the Holy Spirit, “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.” What a gift! The Holy Spirit living inside us directs, teaches, and reminds us of God’s Wisdom. We have a personal guide for this life who never abandons us.
Just as the sunflower utilizes the sun to produce a bountiful harvest from all part of plant, I pray that Jesus, the Son, produces a harvest in me as I choose to follow Him in all that I do. I plan to use the lesson of the sunflower to remind me to always follow the One who never leads me astray.