Follow the Leader

"Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown." --Revelation 2:10

Read: Revelation 2

After President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in 1963, the men of the Secret Service were left reeling. Plagued by doubt and overwhelmed by a sense of failure, they still had a job to do. The new president needed to be protected and their fallen leader had to be laid to rest. And a decision by the widowed First Lady would put them back to work in an even more precarious situation.

When given the option between burying her husband with family in his home state of Massachusetts and Arlington National Cemetery, Jackie opted for the latter. When the route of funeral procession was determined, Secret Service agents pleaded with the First Lady to ride in a vehicle where she could be better protected. She refused, opting instead to march in the procession close behind the casket of her slain husband. The gesture inspired Lyndon Johnson and visiting heads of state, including the French President and British Prime Minister, to do the same despite the inherent risks of walking in such an exposed, vulnerable environment. The Secret Service, stretched to its limit, could not guarantee their protection.

We march, exposed and vulnerable to attacks, in the wake of our Leader. On this procession, the threats are persistent and the adversary is determined. But while our faith may become battered and bruised, we are securely protected beneath (and within) the shield of the One we follow.

--Eric Velazquez

Question: How does knowing that we are completely protected as we follow our Leader compel you to pursue a healthy, abundant life? Are you vocal to others about who you're following? Do you remain in secret service or is the Holy Spirit leading you to boldly declare your faith?

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"We don't strive to be healthy to be loved by God. We strive to be healthy because we are." --Jimmy Pena