“As Jesus walked beside the Sea of Galilee, He saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. ‘Come, follow Me,’ Jesus said, ‘and I will send you out to fish for people.”- Mark 1:16-17
Gone Fishing! This phrase speaks to getting away from our regular surroundings to enjoy a place free from the stresses and pressures that everyday life brings. Many people looked for such a reprieve during the holiday season through time off work, time with family, and trips. Despite our best efforts to retreat and get recharged, the new year often hurriedly hurls us back onto the work horse and carousel known as “busy and crazy”.
The answer is not about getting enough rest but choosing a life output that is aligned to God’s purpose and designed to bless others. In Colossians 3:23 Paul calls us to this type of life and labor, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.” As much as I love fishing, people often fail to understand how hard it can be. From waking up early, traveling to a specific location, purchasing a fishing license, prepping equipment, placing bait on your pole, waiting for a bite, cleaning up and gutting the fish to enjoy the catch, fishing takes time, costs money, and is messy.
Jesus very first followers were called into a new profession and passion of FISHING FOR PEOPLE. This new life was now focused and measured by sharing the good news, inviting people to believe in Jesus, and making disciples. Like traditional fishing sharing our faith requires focus, patience, and energy. It can be quite intimidating and inconvenient, yet I believe that one of the most important things we can engage in as a ReadYes people (our 2023 theme), is casting out our nets for a catch so hearts are changed and heaven is filled!
1 Peter 3:15- “But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be ready to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.”
2 Timothy 4:2- “Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke, and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.”
Colossians 1:27- “To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”
Matthew 5:16- “In the same way, let your light so shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”
Rather than getting away, get out there and go fishing! Let’s do the work of praying for people, spending time with unbelievers, sharing our testimony, sending a Bible verse via text/email, and inviting folks to church.