Admittedly, I let my busy life dominate my time and mind most days, and over the past few months, I have recognized a tension in my heart between my time spent on checking a box on my to-do list and time spent in the word. Jesus is jealous for me - this is a hard concept to grasp as the Lord is perfect and almighty, but even so, we are his mission on the earth. Without our time, our attention, and our hearts focused on him - we cannot bring glory to the Kingdom as we were put here to do.
My husband shared with me a recent devotion from Phil Tuttle, of Walk Thru the Bible, that illustrates how God asks for our full trust and surrender. The devotion comes from Luke 5, a popular story in the new testament of when Jesus called his first disciples.
(Luke 5) 1One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret, the people were crowding around him and listening to the word of God. 2 He saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. 3 He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat. 4 When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” 5 Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.” 6 When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. 7 So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink. 8 When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” 9 For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, 10 and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners. Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” 11 So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.
The devotion highlights 4 ideas about the text that gave me a new perspective and I hope they challenge you.
1. Jesus asked to borrow Simon's boat to attain a better platform so the crowd could see and hear him better.
Is Jesus asking to borrow any of your worldly possessions so he can use them for his purpose? I often have a hard time surrendering the things in this world that bring me joy - I forget that all I have was entrusted to me by God and when he asks to borrow it, I should joyfully surrender in confidence that he will use it for his glory.
2. Jesus told the Simon when and how to lower their nets for a catch.
Is Jesus speaking to you and telling you how to do your “Job” here on earth? I love Simon’s response to Jesus when he directs him to lower the nets, “because you say so, I will”. I often find myself going through the motions of life routinely and sometimes forget to take the time to listen for God’s direction.
3. Jesus revealed to the fisherman that they were unable to do their job without his help.
Is Jesus revealing your inadequacy without him in any area of your life? I feel inadequate in many things without the help of my heavenly father, over time I have learned to trust him and follow his lead because it has never lead me astray. There have been three specific times in my life where God completely changed my plans and redrew my map. Each of these major changes brought confusion and uncertainty, but the reward of choosing God’s plan has yielded more fulfillment and joy than I ever could have imagined. It is important to remember to never dig up in doubt what you planted in faith and if the result is not good, then God is not done.
4. Jesus told Simon to not be afraid, for he would now be fishing for people.
Is Jesus redefining the purpose for your life? This perhaps resonates with me the most. I was reminded that at the very core of our existence, we are called to be the Salt and the Light in the world we live in. Salt of the earth, Salt that melts the ice and helps break the fall of our neighbors. Light of the world, Light that pierces the darkness, shares hope, and shines for all to see.
The below prayer was shared with me from my pastor, Louie Giglio, and I believe it is such a beautiful prayer for the start of the day. I hope this challenges you to be an intentional “Fisher of People" and I hope that Jesus overfills your cup with joy and hope and it spills over to others in your daily life.
God, today open one door for me
to be salt and light for someone in my city.
To lift somebody, to share my faith, to invite along,
to meet one need. In Jesus name.