I have a very inspirational picture on the wall in my office that a photographer friend gave me. I have been spending a lot of time of late looking at it. Those of you who have been to my office may have seen it. One might even have questioned why have it on the wall in such a prominent place. There is nothing particularly stunning about the picture. The subject is a group of longhorn cattle out in a field. The photographer titled it “Moving On.” He has since moved on himself, but I believe he had taken it quite some time before he had received his terminal diagnosis. It was during a time that we were preparing to move on.
What caught his eye was the message it portrays. It is also what I find inspiring about the picture. There is this bull leading a cow and some calves. There is no clear well defined path that they are headed down. The grass is high and the way seems somewhat stony, still they follow. You can see hills in the distance but they are not in sharp focus. The way before them even seems to be hazy and not clear; yet, they have chosen to follow the lead. The grass does not seem greener where they are headed but there appears to be more of it where they are headed than where they are coming from. They are not running but simply walking toward something new, something different than where they were. Slowly but steadily they move on. Clearly he has not communicated to them where they are headed only that it was time to go and so they follow. Together they are moving on.
So, it is from time to time I catch myself looking up at that picture. It reminds me that I am called to follow God’s lead. The pathway may not seem cleared nor the way smooth but still I am called to follow. It may seem greener where I am than where we may seem to be going but still I am called to move on. The hills may loom before me and the pathway may seem hazy and unclear but still I am called to move on.
The awesome thing about this for me is that we tend to want to see all the way down the path before we are ready to move on. God has never promised to show us what is further down the path but rather only that the Lord is present with us now. We are called to follow the Lord before us not the path promised to us. Our tendency is to look to the path and not the Lord. The path might be a bigger church, a larger congregation, more money, a more familiar and comfortable way. The call is never to the path but to follow the Lord where ever he might lead us.
The cows and the calves are not look to the path but to the one who is leading them. From time to time I have to remember it is who I follow not what I follow that moves me on. With the Lord before me I know it is always to a brighter future.
Let’s look to the Lord to lead us and move on with him to a brighter future.