In a land far away, a young ruler named Follow was living a good life. He was popular and had great wealth. He was strong and healthy, his family and servants cared for him well. In Follow’s world, it seemed there was nothing more to want. Follow was a good son, obedient to what his parents and advisers told him to do all his life. As a young prince, he had been taught well the ways and traditions of the land. He was intelligent and had reached each milestone expected of him according to his development as a wise man. But Follow lacked one very important lesson in life. Though his family were generous people and gave to many needful projects and causes, Follow was ignorant to social activism. As the only heir to this Father’s throne, he was highly protected and confined. Some of his friends spent days on great missions and returned to the land with trophies of accomplishment and high respect for their humanitarianism. Follow longed for that level of human engagement. He prayed and asked his father to bestow on him just one opportunity to travel beyond their land to distribute unto the poor. His father saw the hunger in the young man’s eyes and could not deny him his petition and so he sent him on his quest.
For months, Follow led a life much different from the kingdom privilege that he had known. It was difficult at first to adjust to the threatening livelihood of the people in the poor country. But the more time Follow spent with them, the more he wanted to save them. And he wasn’t at all anxious to leave.
One day in the country, a young lady was working in the river to catch fish and Follow took notice of her. He laughed to himself as she fell repeatedly in the mud after dropping her slippery prey and diving to retrieve it. Fishing was hard but she seemed not to mind. She was engrossed in her day’s work. She never took notice of Follow standing nearby on the riverbank gathering reeds. Each day after, Follow returned to the same spot along the river in hopes to see her again. He gathered the nerve to ask her if she would allow him to assist her in gathering the fish. Shy and ashamed of her muddy appearance before the disguised prince, she agreed to accept his help and told him her name, Love. Many days passed that Follow met the girl at the riverbed day after day after day. She rarely said a word as he spoke of nature and how beautiful it was and how he so enjoyed the days in her country. Some days it rained and they continued in their work never seeming to mind the downpour. At the end of a work day, Follow turned to the lady and pulled the dangling, muddy strains of hair from her face and tucked them gently behind her ears. He lifted her chin up to his gaze and gently whispered, “what shall a man do to spend life with you?”. She looked squarely in his eyes and replied, “he needs to give all of himself to LOVE.” She took his hand and place it on her heart and cupped it under her hand. Follow smiled and took her hand and kissed the center of her palm. Knowing his time was ending with the young lady and the people he had come to adore, he said to her, “I am going away and I am coming back to you. If you love Me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father, because my Father is greater than I.” He left her there in the river. He knew what he needed to do.
Follow returned to his land and to his parents. The countrymen were eager to know where the young prince had been and what he had done. But Follow was eager to talk to his father. He asked for a private meeting and told him of his journey. When he finished his story of his time with the young lady, his Father had only one question. “What do you want to do son?” Follow grabbed his father’s hands and cupped them in his own. “Father,” he said, “I left my throne here in this kingdom and I found LOVE. I denied myself for LOVE. I have come to prepare a place for LOVE for where I am there she may be also.”
The young ruler’s time away was expected to mature him socially. But this was astonishing news. His Father was delighted that Follow didn’t return home disappointed and was overjoyed to hear Follow’s plans. The ruler of the land understood that Follow could never be a leader of people without first giving himself to love. Wonderful things happened in life because of Follow and Love. Follow and Love married and had Flow.
As the rich young ruler learned in the Biblical parable of Luke 18, Follow discovered that he left the things of the kingdom for his own sake. You leave not the things of the kingdom for kingdom’s sake, you leave your possessions for your own sake that you may possess more and life everlasting. That’s LOVE!
Following is a faith thing. Anything that requires faith, requires love to keep focus on the right things.
Follow.gif by Ben Stafford
What does love have to do with how and who you follow? Share it with us in the comments.