“And so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, ‘Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.’ And when they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and followed him.” Luke 5:10-11
Imagine that you’re putting together a dream team, say, a dozen friends. They’re going to go on a huge adventure with you. You need to be able to trust these people and enjoy being around them. Who do you choose?
Jesus is pretty much in this situation when he starts his ministry. He’s looking to put together a team and He can choose whoever He wants. He’s God with skin on, and there are no limits to his choices.
If I was choosing my team, I might choose some really influential people - maybe a king or two, people who were smart, people who were well-spoken. To say that Jesus doesn’t do this is pretty much a huge understatement.
Not only does Jesus not choose important people, smart people, or rich people, he chooses….fisherman? Not hating on fishermen at all. I’ve been known to watch an episode or two of Deadliest Catch, so I think it’s a pretty cool thing. But the twelve people who are supposed to spread the Kingdom of Heaven? I don’t know if I would make that choice.
Thank goodness Jesus doesn’t think like me! When we look at Jesus calling the disciples in Luke 5, we see how normal these guys are. In fact, the only thing that’s special about them is that they leave what they know to follow Jesus. Jesus doesn’t ask them for resumes or references or report cards.
That’s so cool to me because it means that if these guys are qualified to walk with Jesus, I’m qualified to walk with Jesus. If I can trust that Jesus loves me not for what I can do or what I have done, but who I am, then I have confidence that He can use me.
It can be so easy to look at following Jesus as this thing that’s reserved for VIPs. The perfect people. The people who never say anything mean to anyone else or the people who do cool things, like start an orphanage or something. When we look at the disciples, we see a group of people who started more arguments than orphanages.
This, my friends, means that we don’t have to wait around until we’re perfect to follow Jesus. The part that is important is faith; is following Jesus even when it’s risky. And even more importantly, trusting that Jesus still loves us even when we fail - because we will. We don’t have to wait until we’re amazing people to follow Jesus. We just have to go ahead and follow Him, and trust that while we do, He is at work making us new.