Fishers of Men…
Our nephew, Victor, is getting ready to start college in the fall at Eastern Kentucky University. Registration was earlier this week and he completed the necessary process before boarding a jet for the western U.S. where he will work on a ranch this summer prior to beginning his college years. Anyway, my brother, Doug, and his wife, Jill, stopped by Carmel to spend the evening yesterday on their way home from school registration. It was an unexpected pleasure to see them for dinner and to have them spend the night with us.
One of the great things about being around siblings is that things never seem to change. We fall right back into the rhythms of the past and it all seems so natural. We talked about all sorts of things – some old and others brand new. This morning, after breakfast, we were all sitting outside and the subject of fly fishing came up. Neither Jill nor Doug have ever tried the sport and they were most anxious to learn the basics. I didn’t need any more encouragement than that to fulfill their desire to try fishing in this way.
We started out and before you knew it, both Doug and Jill were learning the ropes of how to gently cast a fly onto the surface of the lake. Both of them admitted that it looked easier than the reality of actually trying to cast a fly line. We had great fun and it was like so many other times in the past – it didn’t make too much difference what we were doing – it was just fun being together. Said another way, we didn’t have a destination – it was the journey that was so enjoyable.
We talked about the generations long past, great grandparents and how they lived – and died. Doug even brought down some of Mom’s jewelry that has been in storage since she passed away back in 1998. Seeing some of her prized pieces brought the memories just flooding back to me as we looked at each piece.
And our children are getting older but it seems like yesterday that they were all just entering the world. When put in the context of our entire lives, it is easy to see how God has worked leading our steps and brought us to this point.
But that whole journey started with a step of faith. And it came to fruition when each of us accepted Jesus as Lord and Savior of our lives. I can’t help but think this evening that there were a number of fisherman several thousand years ago who were casting their nets into the sea when Jesus approached them with a challenge – a challenge to follow Him – and reach for the bigger prize of leading people to a knowledge of the saving grace of Jesus Christ.
Our verse for this evening is from the gospel of Mark. We are told, in Mark 1:16, “Now as he walked by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men.” So just like Doug and me this morning, Jesus approached brothers who were fishing – and He promised them something greater than catching fish.
My encouragement this evening is that Jesus meets us where we are and usually communicates with us in some way that we are familiar and comfortable with. I have no doubt that this is why Jesus approached the fishermen with visions of becoming something even more important. My prayer is that whether you are a fisherman or not, you will become dedicated to fishing for disciples of Jesus Christ. There is no more important task on the face of the earth. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…