40 WAYS IN 40 DAYS LENT 2015
#7 Hooking the Big Fish
As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake—for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, ‘Follow me and I will make you fish for people.’ And immediately they left their nets and followed him.
“Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.”
I have to admit I have never really been a keen fisher or really wanted to be, something to do with time and patience perhaps! There is something however in the words ‘come and follow me’. Connected deeply I think with other interpretations that say ‘come and see’. For years these words and others have been used as key slogans in evangelism and growing the church and particularly in lent I think to read it only in that way misses the point of Mark. There is a distinct call here to refocus the disciples, not convert them but in many ways re orientate them. In this case the core business of the disciples is fish, Jesus calls them to shift their core business to people.
There in the invitation is the come and see, the come follow me suggests come and see the ways of God, for they are concerned about people. For fishing was no easy task in the first century. It took commitment, passion and great resource. Business was tough and people’s livelihood relied on the days catch, determining whether their families would eat that day. As the disciples leave their boat behind, they are called by Jesus to bring their passion, their commitment and their resources to come and see the revealing kingdom of God.
I wonder when the last time was we were invited to come and see, to come and follow? Who are we following? What are we taking with us? What are we inviting people to come and see?
What are the markers that make sure our core business are people? If we really read this text for all it is worth we will see that it is connected to us deeply in all we say, think and do. Perhaps this is the marker, come and follow is to hook the big fish, to catch people, not for conversion but to invite them to see life!
Perhaps today you could go fishing…if you literally can great! If not why not go fishing for a conversation, a ‘so how’s things for you today?’ conversation. Perhaps in this shared human moment, something of the kingdom of God might just get revealed and you might hook that big fish!
– LB, Moreland Baptist