I’m not much of a fisherwoman in my own right. I’ve never baited my own hook and stood on the lakeshore with my line in the water. It’s just not something that ever appealed to me. It could be because as a young girl my Dad and my Uncle shared ownership in a fishing boat. Now for a girl who grew up only a couple of miles from the shore of Lake Michigan, you’d think that my family having a boat would be a dream come true. Well, it was until the day when we were on the lake and a storm rolled in. I became incredibly sea sick as our little boat was tossed about by the waves.
I remember only flashes from that day as Mom rushed me to a little room below the deck of the boat. We had a bucket there and a small, flat, vinyl mattress. I don’t remember anything else until we were back on shore where Dad and Uncle were pulling the boat from the lake onto the trailer. That was the end of fishing for this girl!
My concept of fishing completely changed when I began taking time to meditate on Matthew 4:19, “And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Jesus is charging the fishermen to drop their nets, to follow Him, and to share the gospel. In reality, it’s not just fishermen that need to follow Jesus and share the gospel, but each and every one of us.
For me, this scripture has always gone along with Matthew 28:19-20 “Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations,[a] baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” I realize that it’s the complete package that Jesus calls us to. Once we follow and learn from Him, then we can go out and share the good news with others! Our job is to lead others to Christ, teach them in His ways, and then they should complete the same process. It’s being a disciple who makes disciples who make disciples!
So where am I going with this? It came about in an amazing way today. God always does that doesn’t He? Unpredictably perfect! I was working on writing my first Bible study book when a notification popped up on my laptop. A sweet young woman I have been leading in Bible study via Instagram over the last several weeks was live on Facebook. Normally I do my best to not be distracted by social media when I’m working, but today it was an immediate response to hop over and hear her message.
She was sharing an encouraging word to women, and telling them how valuable they are in Christ. Then, she said that I taught her what she said next. Truly, I was immediately covered in chill bumps and tears filled my eyes! It wasn’t pride, it’s was joy! Joy that God had brought us together. Joy that during a time when I was evaluating the effectiveness of my ministry God affirmed my purpose. Joy that I had in some way been able to share Jesus with her. And joy that I was following Matthew 28:19! She and I together are now abiding Jesus’ command to go and make disciples! To teach these disciples. Oh, and then the greatest joy of all became evident. And in all of this we can rejoice that God will be with us always, even until the end of time!
I encourage you right now, share Jesus with someone! Anyone! In person, online, through the mail…just share! You too will be rejoicing in being fishers of men.