I was reading from a pre-school bible to my daughter last night. The story hit me during that short reading. It’s found in Luke 5 when Jesus used someone’s boat to preach, then had them cast their nets one last time, even though they had fished all night. The progression stood out to me.
Assistance – Simon was fine letting Jesus using his boat to teach people. To make things easier, Jesus stepped into the boat, pushed out from shore and talked to the crowd. It was a nice thing for Simon to do. And it was the first step toward being changed by the power of Jesus.
Ambivalence – When Jesus asked Simon to move out to the deep and let down the nets, Simon answered with uncertainty and doubt. He was confident that they had done all they could to catch fish and it just wasn’t happening. It’s interesting that Simon was fine letting Jesus use his boat, but when it came to obeying the call to take action, he responded somewhat on the cool side. However, he did conclude that, “because Jesus had asked him” he would do as he said.
Abundance – And a miracle happened. They caught fish. So many in fact, their nets were about to burst and they had to call other boats to come help them.
Abandon – Even with all the success of that moment, the end result was that they pulled their boats up on shore, left everyone and followed Jesus. All those fish – the biggest catch they may have had in a while – and they just left it. Their lives and hearts were changed in a moment.
Thoughts & Questions:
This story began with a sermon – Jesus preaching. And ended with people totally following him! This is still a model for today. Never underestimate preaching.
Experiencing the power of Jesus is life changing. When people see it first hand, their lives are changed. That’s why mission is such a powerful influence in the souls of individuals. We not only hear it, we see it happening and we are a part of it.
In what ways are you “just being kind” toward Jesus and the church? In what ways are you feeling that Jesus is calling you farther? How are you answering?
What does it take for abundance to happen?
What does it take for you to follow Jesus with total abandonment?