The Trumpet Sounds‘Following Jesus’


We live in a world of basically four types of people. You get the innovators, the trendsetters, the trend-followers, and then the mainstreamers.

It works like this: The innovators will come up with some out-there idea. A raw sound or an outfit that will be reasonably radical and slightly weird. It won’t be in fashion at that precise moment in time, but their idea is different, fresh, and oozes with potential.

The trendsetter is the person with influence. They are the ones who take it to the street, who wear it in the magazines, and get the thumbs up or thumbs down from the press. They are the risk-takers but not the creator; they didn’t come up with the idea, concept, or sound.

The trend-follower is the one who takes what is good, what is popular, and then struts their stuff with their new attire. There is no risk here because they know what is in fashion. The shops have told them, the magazines have told them, and their celebrity role model has told them.

The mainstreamer is the person who follows the common current thought of the majority. In terms of music, it is the tunes in the top 20 that get pumped out on most radio stations. In clothes, it is the garments in the shop window of the most popular brands. There is nothing wrong with being mainstream. In fact, most people are. The mainstreamers keep the others in business.

So what does this have to do with following Jesus? Fashion, music, and style will come and go. It is something that is always changing and morphing into something different. We can easily be maneuvered to look a certain way and to like a certain style. Sometimes, the directing is obvious, and other times, very hidden. Driven by the desire to fit in, we lose our individuality and personal innovation.

Not everyone will design clothes or make music, but surely, we have a choice in who and what we follow? The great news is Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8). He does not fade away and does not come in or out of fashion. From the moment He walked on Earth, He has been the most talked about person and even to this day remains in that position.

Our modern-day society would have Religion as a trend, something to add to your collection of life bits and bobs. Religion was not what Jesus was about. Religion is about works, about what you do, about how good you are. Jesus says it is about the internal, not the external. It is about believing first and not behaving first. Jesus says, “Just come and follow me.”

Jesus doesn’t care if you’re an innovator, trendsetter, trend-follower, or mainstreamer. Your style, taste, position, or popularity means nothing to Him. He is just looking for people who will follow Him in this generation of innovators, trendsetters, trend-followers, and mainstreamers. He is the ultimate innovator. He made the world and everything in it. He made you and me, the whole intricate human design. He does not change—He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. That is a foundation you can build on. That is the innovator worth following.

This Sunday at 10:45 at South Side we will continue with our series “Following Jesus.” I want to encourage you to come and grow deeper by following Jesus daily!

In Christ,

Barry Pettit

Lead Minister

South Side Church of Christ

By Barry Pettit

Religion Columnist

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