Shadowing Jesus!

During our recent visit with our family in Albuquerque, we got an opportunity to get further acquainted with two new family members. Our precious grand daughter, Klaire, had her 2nd birthday during our visit. We were extremely excited to "love on her" and her two older brothers. But the newest of family members was Sophie Grace, a nine-month old hyper bred "Mini Golden Doodle!" She is a combination of a Golden Retriever and miniature French Poodle. She reminded Monique and me of our Freddie who graced our family with ten years of good and not-so-good memories. Old Fred was a "Cock-a-Poodle" (Cocker Spaniel and French Poodle). He was a little "high-strung" too!

On the first full day of our visit, Melissa, our daughter, put us in charge of the pup! She and the kids went off to their day at school and left the "old folks" to dog-sit the Sophie. She followed me everywhere and shadowed me unrelentingly! It was fortuitous for both of us that Monique had laryngitis and that meant that I would be the "alpha male/dog" the entire day.
Sophie Grace Shadowing Me!

Sophie tried my patience at first by bumping into me and jumping up on us wanting attention. Monique, wasn't much help because she could barely squeak out a sentence of protest like, "Go! Get away from me!" And  she wasn't just saying that to Sophie! During one frustrating moment, Monique hissed at me to get my attention. I blurted out, "Don't you raise your voice to me!" And we both broke out in laughter because she couldn't raise a voice she didn't have! I told her, "That was my best come-back today!"

Sophie was good most of the day and so was I after getting into trouble occasionally with "The Mrs.!" I took this picture and texted the kids in Illinois, Texas and Missouri. They all chimed in on the thread how much Sophie reminded them of Fred. I used to hold Fred by the snout and dramatically state the obvious while staring into his eyes, "There is an incredible amount of D-O-G in you!" His tail would enthusiastically wag while his backside would wiggle with frenzy as if it could separate from the rest of his body. He thought it was the ultimate compliment and all I was doing was being teasingly sarcastic!

When Jesus called Simon and Andrew who were fishing on Lake Galilee, He simply invited them to "Come with me! I'll make a new kind of fisherman out of you. I'll show you how to catch men and women instead of perch and bass" (Matthew 4:19, MSG). They were to follow Him and in essence "shadow Him" throughout those three years of His earthly sojourn. What is the value of such fellowship? They would see Him in action loving, caring, ministering, confronting, and sacrificing His life for others.

It has been said, "More is 'caught' than 'taught!'" Jesus did both! He modeled for others so they could "catch" His priorities each day! He also taught (by story and precept) and engaged them daily so that they could understand what He was doing and saying. How are you doing "Shadowing the Savior" these days? Daily Bible reading and prayer along with regular worship keeps us in close fellowship with the Savior. It is always best to "keep in step" with the Lord!

Mike Keppler, retired pastor,
active churchman and
doting grandparent.


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