Good Shepherd Lutheran

Are You Ready to Go Fishing? Matthew 4:12-23
Jesus knew a secret. He knew that to reach people you have to move out of your comfort zone, and following Jesus is guaranteed to help you earn your frequent flyer miles! Just like Jesus moved throughout His ministry in order to obey the will of God, you and I are also called to move around in our ministry. The idea that we can just sit inside a church building and let God do the work just doesn’t cut it.
Yes, we tell people to “Come and see.” But at the same time, we’re called to go where God leads. Not just in occupation, or housing, or location. But also, into the lives of people around us.
God moves us. He moves me toward you. Or He moves me toward my neighbor. Or He moves me toward someone He puts in my path to reach out to. If you want to reach people, you have to move to where they are. If you’re going to catch fish, you have to go to where the fish are.
But is that what we’re doing? Have we reached outside of our comfort zone lately? We may be building relationships with people, but there must be more. We have to share God’s message. When you go fishing with Jesus, you have to give people the message they need to hear, and that may not always be the one that they want to hear. Jesus preached, “Repent, because the kingdom of heaven has come near!” (Matthew 4:17). Tough stuff.
Jesus didn’t merely offer service to the needy. He didn’t just heal people and walk away. He told people two things. 1) The kingdom is coming, and, 2) You need to change. He didn’t shy away from telling people they needed to repent. And we can’t either. We have to be willing to let people know what it really takes to follow Jesus.
In verse 19 Jesus tells the fishermen he finds, “Follow Me, and I will make you fish for people!” That’s something these fishermen could understand. After all, they fished for a living, and they could easily see how to translate that into fishing for people to make them followers of Christ.
They understood that if you want to follow Jesus you can’t just sit around mending your nets. You have to get out there and follow. You have to go where the fish are. The people who followed Jesus’ call heard him and then left everything behind.
That’s because they were changed. All they wanted to do was to follow Jesus. Even if that meant sacrifice, it was worth it because when you go fishing with Jesus, miracles follow.
When you go fishing with Jesus, God can work wonders in your life. And as you grow in your relationship with Him, you’ll experience amazing things. So, what about you? Are you ready? Are you ready to go fishing?