Unliking and unfollowing

Shortly after Jesus performed a miracle that should have made his popularity soar, several people “unfollowed” Him. How come? He made them so uncomfortable that even after seeing Him feed thousands of people using just a few loaves and fishes, they departed from Him. I wonder if He felt less “sent” because his popularity nose-dived.

We live in a world where your number of followers matter. But in reality, you may not be making any impact or progress if you have not been “unliked” and “unfollowed.” Jesus brought comfort but He was very comfortable with making people uncomfortable. He gave even his closest disciples permission to leave.

As an entrepreneur, I know this flies in the face of conventional business wisdom but perhaps we need to begin to measure our significance by how many people “unfollow” us because of what we stand for, what we say, what we do, more than how many follow us. We are taught to avoid polarity but polarity is unavoidable, if we would be authentic.

The way of destruction and failure is very broad and many follow it. The way of life and significance on the other hand, is very narrow and rugged and very few find it, much less follow it, and I think some of those who find it “unfollow” it.

Soren Kierkegaard wrote an amazing but very short book titled, “Crowd is untruth” and I believe Jesus understood it well. The crowd followed him when he gave them bread, they unfollowed him when his words made them uncomfortable, they crucified him when he upset their religion.

The number of your followers, “friends” or “likes” has no bearing on your significance or lack thereof.

6 thoughts on “Unliking and unfollowing

  1.  Either you are going to please God or you will please men. The Lord Jesus said…”If the world hate you…you know that it hated me before it hated you” (John 15:18). If the world does not hate you…then there is something radically wrong.

  2. I just read John 6 this morning, so your message is RIGHT ON TIME for me! I just love how the Lord works! So amazing…I praise you, Father, for how you move and work among us!! Thank you, Tolu, for this post. We must be willing to follow Jesus no matter the cost. Jesus often had no place to sleep. He was NOT popular. If we are seeking approval from men, we can be pretty sure we have gotten off track. Jesus was rejected by those in His own hometown – those He had known the longest. Many who should have recognized Him as the Messiah were blind and could not receive Him. It is not our job to make people receive. Our work is to believe in Jesus (vs. 29) and keep our eyes fixed on Him (Heb. 12:2). We cannot be looking around to see who is receiving us but only praying for all to receive Jesus who is the Bread of Life (vs. 35). If those close to us and within our realm of influense don’t receive Jesus from us, let us pray unceasingly for the Lord to come to them in a way they can see and accept – that He will speak to them in a language they can understand!!
    Thank you, again! God bless and keep you, friend. May we leave behind everything that hinders, including our need for acceptance, to be liked and approved of by men, and follow wholeheartedly after Christ!!
    In Him,

    • And true leaders do not seek popularity. They continue to lead when they are unliked and unpopular. They seek not man’s approval but God’s. True leaders do not seek followers. Followers seek true leaders.

  3. Awesome post. This definitely answers some questions I’ve had about “Unfollowing.” lol. I loved this post. Thanks.

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