“Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.” Luke 5:10b-11
Have you ever pondered Jesus’ invitation to Peter to follow Him? Peter had fished all night and caught nothing. Jesus challenged him to go out into deep water and let down his nets. Still, Peter followed Jesus’ instructions and Jesus performed a miracle — filling Peter’s nets with fish to full capacity.
Peter did not realize how drastically his life would change by saying “Yes” to Jesus’ invitation to leave everything and follow Him.
My life was similarly interrupted. I hit my rock bottom. I had suitcases full of mistakes and I was heading in the wrong direction. A friend challenged me to take a risk and try following Jesus wholeheartedly for three weeks and see what would happen. I went home that night and gave my heart to Jesus and pledged to follow Him wholeheartedly. That three-week challenge has lasted thirty-three years, and I am still following!
Peter objected, believing himself unworthy, but Jesus persisted with His invitation and encouraged Peter not to be afraid, but to just follow. Peter left everything and followed Jesus. He embraced his new calling. Jesus used Peter’s fishing profession to explain that life would be different — that he would use some of the same skills, but from now on, would be fishing for people.
You also have been invited to a new purpose and set of priorities as a follower of Christ. How would you describe your experience of responding to Jesus’ invitation to follow Him? Have you left your life to follow Him, or have you inviting Jesus to join your life? One is discipleship; the other is living with divided loyalties.
Lord Jesus, thank you for the invitation to follow you wholeheartedly. If there are aspects of my life that are keeping me from following you wholeheartedly, please show me. Please give me the grace to forsake my own life and to embrace what it means to follow you, making loving you and reaching out to others, my priority and purpose. Amen.
Tomorrow is the start of a new year. Join the adventure. Make Jesus the absolute center of your life?