When Jesus' disciples followed him, they had a slow revelation of who He was. They went on a journey with the Master. They saw and heard and experienced who the Son of God was. They followed Jesus through his triumphs and his pain and sorrow.... so must I.
I must follow on this journey when it is dark and I cannot see where I am going or even where He is, but I hear his voice and follow. I must follow when the road is rough and hard and seems unending. I must also follow when life seems blissful and easy. I must follow his example and his teaching at all times and in all seasons. I must live like He did. I must take up my cross and follow, leaving all behind, serving him only, following no other.
Following may lead to pain, but ultimately to life. I cannot turn back, ever. I can only go forwards following in the footsteps of my master. Following means three things: trust, obedience, and sacrifice.
Trust starts with knowing and seeing Jesus, having relationship and revelation of who He is, which builds trust and faith - trust in our leader. Second comes obedience. Once we have learned to trust, that goes deeper and we learn to trust when life is hard, and we learn to obey and follow Him, no matter what, and we learn to follow and obey when we are commissioned to carry out tasks that in the natural we cannot do or would not do. Lastly, following is about sacrifice. It is a daily sacrifice. We choose to lay down our lives and follow Him, not through fear or control, but of our growing love for our leader. And although we 'loose' our old life, we gain everything. We gain what this world could never give us. We gain an inner contentment, job and life that only our leader can give us.