One day as Jesus was walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers—Simon, also called Peter, and Andrew—throwing a net into the water, for they fished for a living. Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me…
Who do you follow? That is a pretty normal question these days. It seems like the younger you are the more varied that answer it going to be. Following someone today has been reduced to a click of a button. We can be following hundreds of people via social media and not truly be following any of them. Today, when we think of follow them, it means we get their posts on our news feed. We might be aware of their latest thoughts or antics. But, when Jesus invited the disciples to follow Him, He was inviting them into something so much more.
One of the words used a lot in the New Testament and in the Church is disciple. Simply put a disciple is a follower. Jesus, when He invited Peter and Andrew to follow Him was actually inviting them to be one of His disciples. But, as the rest of the story goes, we quickly learn that to be a disciple of Jesus meant a whole lot more than just sitting in on some teachings and knowing about Him. Right from the start Jesus asked them to leave their home, their careers, and their family to follow Him.
In a very similar way God has extended this same invitation to all of us. Revelation tells us that Jesus is standing at the door and knocking, just waiting for someone to let Him in. Jesus is standing at the shore of our lives and inviting us to join Him in His life – Come follow me. So, what will we do with the invitation? Will we go? Will we let Him in? For many of us we get stuck on what that means we will have to give up, what we will have to leave behind.
The disciples left a lot. They left those nets behind for a life of hardship and persecution. So, why did they do it? Why should we do it? Why follow Him if we aren’t guaranteed a life of ease? I think they would tell you they chose to follow Him because they believed the life He was offering them (despite the persecution) was better than the life they had been living or the one they would have ended up living. They believed the Gospel to be enough. The Good News that Jesus had come to usher in the Kingdom through His death and resurrection. He was promising, through the difficulty, the life they wanted. One of redemption, reconciliation, peace, and goodness. No one else could lead them there, but Him. So, will you follow Him there to?
Pastor Matt Huff leads Portland Central Nazarene Church. He loves being in ministry and seeing lives transformed by the power of Christ.