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Lent/Easter 2018: First Followers by Jason Edwards

First Follower Theory is the concept that attracting an adherent to some kind of view or initiative is the first step toward beginning a movement that might seem unusual or out-of-step with the surrounding culture to the general population. The first follower is considered to be as important to the development of a movement as the initiator because they make the leader’s viewpoint seem more credible. In his 2010 TED Talk on the subject, Derek Sivers said the
first follower “transforms a lone nut into a leader. If the leader is the flint, the first follower is the spark
that makes the fire.” A movement starts right at the moment that it gets its first follower(s). The first followers then determine so much of how that movement will ultimately take shape and grow.

First Follower Theory easily prompts reflection on business, leadership, culture, fads and just about
any movement we can think of, large or small. Upon first reading about it, it sent my mind straight to musing about how the first followers of Jesus uniquely contributed to the movement we know as Church. I’m not saying, of course, that without first followers Jesus would be a nut, but without them, he would be alone. With them the sacred flint of Jesus’ life and leadership flamed into world-changing movement that continues to transform our lives and our world today.

February 14 is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of our Lenten journey. I hope you’ll join us in worship then and each Sunday during Lent and Easter as we examine the lives of many of Jesus’ first followers.
It may be that in looking for the distinct spark each one of them brought to early Church, then the Spirit will freshly fan the flame of Christ that continues to burn among us and through us today.


Posted by Jason Edwards at 6:00 AM
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