Herd Bound Or Maverick? :: by Grant Phillips

It seems to me that many people, if not most, are herd bound. Let me explain. If a herd of cattle is stampeded toward a cliff, they will all go over the cliff and perish if they are not stopped. They are herd bound. Each one just follows the crowd. Why? They cannot think for themselves. There are few mavericks. A maverick is one who walks a different path than those around him/her. Now you see where I am headed with this.

Why do so many people choose to follow others of like kind, instead of the only One who actually knows where He is going? I am referring to God of course, whether we’re speaking of the Father, Son, or Holy Spirit. He is One.

I can understand why those who do not know Jesus Christ as their own personal Savior will follow anyone and everyone, but that should not be so with a true Christian.  Jesus said that He is the way, and to follow Him. So obviously, He is Who we need to follow. However, I have seen over and over again Christians who will place the Word of God second to what grandpa said, or what their denomination teaches, or what their pastor said, or what they think, or what they feel, or what some author of a book wrote, or the lies taught from the History channel, or what some TV charlatan said, etcetera. I think you get the point.

The question was once asked on a television commercial, “Where’s the beef?” Well, I’ll tell you where it is. It is all piled up at the foot of the cliff, because all the herd bound crowd keep going over the cliff by following everyone but the right One.

Why do children, especially teens, follow their peers instead of their parents who have already been where they are, and know where they’re going? They’re herd bound. Why do children want the same designer clothes as their peers? They’re herd bound. Why do adults want the same “toys” as their peers? They’re herd bound. Why do Christians follow false prophets? They’re herd bound. They do not have the spiritual backbone to stand up for the Truth and be a maverick. They probably don’t even know what the Truth is, because they’re too lazy and sorry to find out from the only place we can get the Truth … the Word of God, i.e. the Bible.

I can’t say that I have ever seen a cow with blinders on, but I have seen a lot of human folk in that predicament. They have no clue as to what is going on around them. The world, as we know it, is seemingly coming to an end, but you would never know it by watching most people. The signs of our Lord’s return are practically screaming at us, but there goes more beef over the cliff, just to pile up at the bottom.

If Christians would just follow the One they say they have put their faith in, there would be an increase of mavericks, instead of so many who are herd bound. Our world around us could be turned upside down for Christ if every true Christian would really get serious about life and Who they should be following.

I do not know when Jesus will come for His own, but I do know that the signs He told us to watch for are here (those for the coming Tribulation period). Time is running out as fast as the last few grains of sand in an hourglass. The shadow of the Tribulation period is creeping upon us. There are so many around each of us that we could warn, if we just would. Many, many souls need to be saved. What are we doing about it? Do we even know what to do about it? Get on your knees with your Bible in hand and He will guide you, but you must be a maverick. You must step away from the misguided crowd, and follow Christ. He is your spiritual GPS. Only He will always have you going the right way, and bring you where you need to be.

I would love to see what would happen if Christians knew the Bible, and applied it, as well as they know their denomination’s stance on any given issue. And then there are those secular interests: sports teams, favorite TV shows, occupations, garden clubs, automobiles, and all those other things that consume our time. From what I read, there were 111,000,000 people who watched Super Bowl XLV. I wonder how many Christians stayed home from church to watch the game? I wonder how many churches closed their doors so their congregations could watch the game? I wonder how many churches had a Super Bowl viewing at their church to “accommodate” their congregations? On the other hand, I wonder how many Christians decided to worship God on Sunday night, instead of following the crowd? Well, I really don’t know the answer to any of those questions, but the Lord does, and that is all that matters. Which were you … herd bound, or a maverick?

It really concerns me on the behalf of those who call themselves Christians, that so many follow the herd instead of the Christ. Jesus said, “Follow me”, and that isn’t a suggestion. It is a command. Jesus said that we are His friend if we obey His commandments. Well, one of His commands is “Follow Me”. Are you following Him, or the herd? Only you, and He, know. If you are not following Him, the obvious conclusion is that you are not His friend, and that is not my conclusion, but His. (John 14:15; 15:14)

It takes a special breed to step out from the herd, and follow the narrow path. It is much easier to travel the interstate, the broad road, and go with the flow. “Everybody’s doing it, so why not I?” Jesus is not “doing it”, and that should be reason enough for us, if we are His friend. So whose friend are we? Are we a friend to the world at large, or are we a friend of Jesus Christ? Jesus said that if we follow the world, the world will love us, but if we follow Him, the world will hate us, because it hates Him. We follow the world … we are herd bound. We follow Him … we are a maverick. Which are you?

It is so much easier to follow the herd and be liked by everyone. Most people want to be liked. But is it worth it, when all we have to look forward to is a long fall over a high cliff?

Could wanting to be accepted by others be the only reason many are herd bound? I perceive that there is another, and that would be that they are as much a part of the herd as the next person. In other words, they aren’t just following the herd. They are the herd. They love what the world has to offer, and have little to no interest in the things of God. If you love the things of the world, you are of the world. Oh, perhaps you begrudgingly try to follow Him on occasion, but is that true commitment to Him? I believe you would have a hard time convincing Him of it.

Where does your heart lie? What do you really love? Where do you really like to be? What do you really like to be doing? Who do you really like to be with? Is Jesus included in any of it? If not, quit fooling yourself, give your whole self to Him. Ask Him to come into your heart and change it. Be a maverick for Christ. Don’t be herd bound.

Grant Phillips