FOLLOW ME MINISTRY: WHAT ARE WE?
What Are We? Mission of the Follow Me Ministry
Follow Me Ministry’s Founder:
The originator of the Follow Me Ministry is named John Marquez. He has worked with several Christian ministries for many years. There are two articles posted on this website that give ample information on his personal background, how he became what he is, and why he does what he does. The first article is biographical. You can find it in the ‘Biblical Meditations’ section of this website. It is article number 1 in the Genesis section, and it’s entitled ‘My Discipleship Journey’.
The second article is booklet sized. You’ll find it in the ‘Articles and Teachings’ section. The title is: ‘Insights From My Past’. It will give you more detailed information about significant events that exerted enormous influence on John and that have, therefore, a direct bearing on the character and thrust of the Follow Me Ministry and its website, and their ultimate purpose.
The Follow Me Ministry Family
Other people have stepped forward to assist John in spreading the Follow Me Ministry message. Some of them live in the USA, but there are also others who live and work on other continents and in countries around the world. But the most notable thing about everyone involved in this Family is that we’re just like you and everyone else. We too are mortal, weak, dependent and limited in many ways. We too are frail and prone to human error and selfishness. We’ve all sinned against God and have hurt other people and have been hurt in return. So we’re all part of the maddening and highly frustrating ‘human condition’ that everyone on earth shares. And like many of you, we’ve searched for most of our lives for answers to questions like ‘Who am I?’ and ‘What is this life all about?’ and ‘Why am I here?’
In the course of our search, we have been encountered by Someone who has proven to be exactly what we’ve been waiting and looking for… and much, much more! And, ever since we’ve gotten to really know His Reality, Goodness and Truth for ourselves, we’ve felt compelled, in one way or another, to spread the news that He really and truly is as real as a bolt of lightning… and He is astoundingly Present… everywhere! And what He has been sent to reveal, and command, and promise to the human race is absolutely true… and utterly worthy of our airtight trust and full acceptance!
Our Relationship with the Creator
Like many others, we too tried to know Him by going to one church or the other, and reading books and attending classes etc. etc. But all of that falls short of the electrifying Reality of actually having Him before you and being in His unforgettable Presence. All of those other things are created things that pertain to Him. But things that are ‘about’ Him, fall short of being in personal contact with the real Person.
We know there are many others whose lives have also been touched and transformed by Him. The world knows us as, ‘Christians’. But that is a confusing term that is nowhere near specific enough. We say that because you probably have noticed that considerable confusion exists among those of us who claim to know and serve Him. To the curious uninvolved onlooker, Christendom presents a puzzling panorama. Even though the people that belong to that category claim to believe in and follow after this special Someone, we’re habitually divided and strife-ridden. We can agree on very little. Thus, over the centuries, we’ve displayed to the rest of the world something that resembles a huge conglomeration of different, and at times, conflicting denominations, movements, sects, groups and theologies. We’ve become something like an enormous ‘bazaar-like’ religious expo, filled with row upon row of booths, stands and tables that are manned by people that do their utmost to draw attention to what they have to offer. They strive to persuade as many people as possible to join their group and help to promote and support their cause and agendas. But those are created things… all of them. And when we focus on what is created, we tend to lose sight of the Creator of us all. And that of course continues to fragment and divide the so-called ‘believers’ more and more.
How Follow Me Ministry is Organized
But the Follow Me Ministry Family is not to be found in one of those competitive ‘booths.’ We don’t draw attention to ourselves. We’re not a formal, organized business corporation or constitutionalized denominational organization. We hold no official religious titles, nor do we promote any specific sectarian theology. We do not recruit anyone to join us or any other group, sect or religious movement. Instead, we leave it to God to direct the steps of the people we encounter. We also do not advertise or promote ourselves, or our website. And because we don’t have anything to sell, or jobs to protect, we don’t collect tithes or charge fees for what we do. And since we receive no salaries and have no budget, we have no reason to solicit funds for anyone’s personal support.
Everything is done on a purely volunteer basis, depending on whether or not the Spirit of God puts it into someone’s heart to step forward to help us carry the load of the responsibility of fulfilling what we believe is a God-given commission. We refrain from any of the above-mentioned pursuits because we’ve noticed that the energies and focus of the people that pass through Christendom’s ‘bazaar’ are very often so scattered in all directions that much of their energy and focus dissipates and evaporates before they have any real opportunity to connect in a personal and intimately interactive way with the special All-Sufficient Person we want to highlight and to whom we intend to draw everyone’s attention!
People that belong to this fallen world’s system, and depend on it for sustenance, place their hopes on created temporary things, assuming that those things will help them achieve peace, joy, security, pleasure, control and lasting satisfaction. But we believe that to put faith and trust in churches, ministries, paychecks and man-given ecclesiastical titles and positions is not what this special Person we’ve encountered has in mind. In fact, He cautions us to seek something that is altogether different:
“For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?
“And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin; yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your Heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. BUT SEEK FIRST HIS KINGDOM AND HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS, and all these things will be added to you!” (Matthew 6:25-33 Emphasis added.)
Yes, that’s right. We’re talking about the Living Word of God made flesh… Yeshua (Jesus), the Living Word of the Living God of the Bible… the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob! And He is awesome and totally Transcendent and Infinitely Perfect! He is so All-Sufficient and so electrifyingly real and amazing, that all His Father has to do is speak forth His Living Word, and the Word immediately creates exactly what His Father says, just the way He intends it to be!
This awesome God, sent His All-Authoritative Living Word to became human, just like us. He did this for a very specific and vitally important reason that has to do with that All-Sufficient quality of His. And our only purpose is to help to unfold, unpack and explain as much as we can about Yeshua and what His words, “Follow Me” actually mean, and about the lifestyle into which His invitation will lead those that love and obey Him.
When Yeshua was on Earth in the first century, He taught and trained a handful of His fellow Jews… men who are known today as, ‘the Apostles’ (or, the emissaries that the Messiah sent forth to proclaim His Message all across the earth). One of them was brought into that group a short time after it had been formed and launched. But when he first heard about Yeshua, he was violently opposed to Him and anything associated with Him. That’s how it was in the beginning. He hadn’t met Yeshua before His death, but he was virulently opposed to what he had heard about Him. At that time, he was called Saul of Tarsus, and he described himself as ‘a Pharisee of Pharisees’. And before Saul knew Yeshua personally, he believed that it was his duty, as a good God-obeying Israelite, to stamp out Yeshua’s memory and get rid of the apostles and anyone else that would dare to believe and follow Him. Saul was convinced, like many of his fellow Jews, that the claims about Yeshua’s Resurrection were nothing but lies, and that His claim to be the long-awaited Messiah of Israel, was utterly fraudulent.
The Result of God’s Presence…
But then, one day, while Saul was on a mission to hunt down any of Yeshua’s followers he could find, in order to incarcerate and bring them before the Sanhedrin for judgment and punishment, Yeshua Himself, who Saul knew had previously been publicly crucified and killed by a squad of Roman soldiers, suddenly appeared and confronted and apprehended him, in a most electrifying and stunning way! And the Reality of His Perfect Presence literally blew Saul to the ground and revealed to him just how real, and risen from the dead and supernaturally present Yeshua really is! So this invasion of Saul’s space blew away his arrogant superior posture and stripped away his delusions and false assumptions… and proved to him just how tragically wrong and misguided he had been about Yeshua. He finally realized that He is the long-awaited Messiah that Moses and the prophets had been announcing and proclaiming for many centuries!
So of course, after that, Saul had a total change of heart. And from that point forward, since he was a citizen of the Roman Empire, he began to be known by his Roman name Paulus, or Paul. And His God-given commission thereafter was to serve as Yeshua’s Israelite apostle to the Gentile world!
And after Yeshua revealed Himself to him, Paul could think and speak about or seek after nothing else… it was nothing but Yeshua from that time forward. And dear friends, that’s exactly the way we are too. The risen Lord has apprehended us as well… of course not in that awesome dramatic and spectacular way that He did with Saul, but in ways that were real enough to break our hardened, self-adoring hearts and forever change our thinking and aspirations and the directions of our endeavors on Earth. So, just as Yeshua changed Saul, so has He changed us, and also many, many others.
So now, Yeshua is what we are all about; and we want to help as many people as possible to get to know Him and to do whatever we can, to expedite their ability to actually experience His All-Sufficiency too. And we wholeheartedly agree with what Paul once wrote about the Lord who became his Messiah and Master, just as He is ours:
“But whatever things were gain to me, these I have considered as loss for the sake of the Messiah. More than that, I consider all things to be loss in comparison to the surpassing value of the knowledge of Messiah Yeshua my Lord. Because of Him, I have suffered the loss of all things; and I consider them garbage in order that I might gain Messiah and be found in Him not having my righteousness derived from Torah, but one that is through trusting in Messiah—the righteousness from God based on trust.” (Philippians: 3-7-9 TLV.)
We too have learned that Yeshua contains within Himself all of the Eternal Fullness of Almighty God! After all, since He’s the only human that has ever been resurrected from the firm grip of Death and now abides within a perfect, indestructible glorified eternal human body, He very justly deserves everyone’s rapt attention! Other people have been resuscitated from the grip of death for a while, but they were still mortal and eventually, they died. But Yeshua rose and will live forever! And we know from our own experiences, that His Father continues to send Him to abide in our midst, by the Power of God’s Holy Spirit, to let all of mankind know that He is here to bring every one of us with Him, into the endless enjoyment of the same awesome resurrected Eternal Life with His Heavenly Father that is already His!
Drawing Us Closer to the Father…
Yeshua, and His Father, who speaks Him forth, are One! He is the Living Word of the uncreated Living God who originates and sustains everyone and everything in Creation! And He really is the resurrected Messiah of Israel and the True Destination that God wants the entire human race to encounter and become one with. Yeshua is the Perfect Living Eternal Word that proceeds from His Almighty Father – the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. And it is to this electrifying Living Word, who proceeds from the heart of Almighty God Himself, and to Him alone that we look. No one knows the Father the way His own Living Word and Holy Spirit know Him; and so it is to our Messiah, Yeshua, the Word made flesh, that we look, and upon whom we depend for all things, past, present and future. And as we learn to know Him at this depth, He, at the same time, is revealing His Father to us, and continues to draw us into His Father’s Eternal Embrace.
The Follow Me Ministry Mission:
So we do whatever we can to help and to bless anyone we encounter who has also heard Him calling to their heart of hearts, to follow Him, the way He called us. And now, we are here to serve Him and to help anyone that He has called into His service who is ready to step forward to enter our sphere of influence, and is ready to join the ranks of His disciples.
This is who we are. This is what we do… no more and no less. And this is what our Follow Me Ministry Family of disciples-in-training around the world, and this website, are all about! We are here to serve you and help you explore the depths of meaning contained in the words, “Follow Me!”… the words Yeshua speaks into the innermost being of anyone that He has chosen to be one of His blessed, beloved disciples.