Invitation #14: People Catcher

“It’s time.”

My sleep-deprived eyelids flew wide open.  As I held our infant daughter, my husband’s words shot through my mind like a launching pinball, bouncing bumper to bumper, redirected by flappers and setting off glaring lights and noisy bells.

Was this wise? We had just given birth to our first child less than 2 months earlier.  I remained on extended maternity leave due to a complication.  Should we exchange the security of his full-time job to start a small business venture now?

The situation paralyzed me with fear yet my husband remained confident.

“Yes, it’s time.  God has made it clear.  Patti, I see opportunities. You know God’s been preparing us. We need to have faith.”

Called to Change

In Luke 5:8, Jesus invites Simon Peter to change.

Simon is wrestling with his feelings of unworthiness before Jesus.

Jesus calms his internal storm by saying, “Don’t be afraid.”

Then Jesus does the unexpected! He provides Simon with his true life’s work.

Jesus invites him to partner in ministry.

Simon Peter’s years of fishing experience will be applied to a new purpose.  He will now fish for people.

He will be a ‘people catcher’ for the Kingdom of God!

A Loaded Statement

Jesus says “Don’t be afraid” because he intends to equip and empower Simon Peter.

His statement is loaded with a beautiful promise.

Jesus will send a Helper in due time.

A Helper who will supply Simon with the words to speak exactly when he needs them.

A Helper who will strengthen and sustain.

A Helper who will bring to mind the teachings of Jesus so he can freely share with his circle of influence.

That Helper is the Holy Spirit.

Are We ‘People Catching’?

We are invited into the ministry of people catching, too!

May I be honest with you?

Sometimes, ‘people catching’ feels large and heavy.   I get stuck in my head, overthinking things. I become insecure and fearful as I work in my own strength instead of staying in step with the Spirit.

What do I say? What if I mess up?  What if I can’t answer her question? What if they reject me?

Yet Jesus tells us, “Don’t be afraid.”

He calms our internal storms by reminding us we have been given the same Helper as Simon.

The same Holy Spirit who gives us the words to say, strengthens and sustains, and reminds us of what Jesus taught so we can impact our circles of influence with confidence and great love.

It’s a Lifestyle

Saying “yes” to Jesus as Lord and Savior means saying “yes” to being his partner in ministry.

It’s ministry that doesn’t start and stop at the front door of the church building.

Instead, our ministry is a lifestyle of love, lived in faith and obedience to Him.

Our God-given circles of influence are a mission field!

As we live with transparency, God redeems our stories and uses them to draw people to himself.  Like Simon, our unique “seasons of preparation” are put to fresh use.

We humbly love in big and small ways as the Holy Spirit leads. There is no need to control, force or manipulate.

This walk is marked by freedom, not fear, because we are responding to the Spirit and trust the outcome into God’s sovereign hands.

Will we risk it?

Let’s start with the people gathered at our own kitchen tables.  Let’s engage and care for our neighbor next door. Let’s volunteer in our schools, and lead into our jobs and communities with tremendous grace and compassion.

One by one, relationship by relationship, the love of Jesus is ignited.

Opportunity is all around us, sweet friend.

“It’s time.”

Questions: Who is in your circle of influence? What is one way you can show the love of Jesus today?   Please leave a comment and let’s chat!

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15 thoughts on “Invitation #14: People Catcher

    1. Sweet friend, I am watching you LIVE this! The world is, too, and you are impacting many for the Kingdom! I am so grateful to do part of our ministry alongside one another!! LOVE YOU BIG!!

    2. Amen to the kitchen table, also my work place my co workers and the students, I work around. I work at the Krach leadership center as a custodian at Purdue University.

      1. Thanks for sharing, Cheri! Powerful things happen when we view our homes and workplaces as mission fields, mindful we are ambassadors of Christ! I have no doubt you are salt and light to many!

  1. Sometimes it’s the smallest people in our lives that need the biggest dose of His love through us. For me right now it is learning to be calm and understanding as I learn how to best communicate with a grandchild who is struggling.
    I realize that this young child just does not communicate like other children and I too am learning how to meet the needs without frustration. So today I will breathe in God’s love and blow out His grace.
    The heart of the children is so tender and ripe for learning about Christ and my attentiveness to them and patients with them will be my testimony of God’s love for them. They are my circle of influence. Lord help me to touch them with Your tender understanding. In Jesus name Amen

    1. Gracious Father, thank you for Bunny. Thank you for this precious grandchild created in your image. Give Bunny discernment and wisdom in communicating. We ask for breakthroughs and patience in the process. Help us to love as you love as we lead into our circles of influence for your glory! In Jesus’ name, Amen!

      1. Patti, thank you for praying for me. Prayer is the greatest gift I can receive from someone, it so touches my heart and spirit. The Lord has really helped me with the situation and has just lifted the burden so that I can relax in just loving this child through his condition. I’m learning more about what the true needs are and how to see the issue as an incredible blessing of how God sees us and loves us. So thank you again for your prayers. God is good and so faithful. Now how can I pray for you?

        1. Sweet Bunny, I love you and I’m excited to journey with you as the Lord unfolds His plan to each of us! You are apart of LFT Ministries so you will see prayer requests coming through! For now, I could use prayer in balancing family life with our home-based business, the writing opportunities and service to our church.
          Blessings always, dear one!

    1. You are salt and light to them, Sheila! They are blessed to have you in their lives. When we intentionally view our circle of influence as a mission field and ask the Holy Spirit to work through us, He does! He creates those opportunities to share our faith, to meet needs and love in big and small ways!

  2. How do you get the courage to finally step out and do the thing the Lord has you to do? The Lord wants me to tell my testimony, but all the questions come up ( what if I mess up) or (What will I say?) And so many more,I’ve never been a person to get up in front of people and speak and there’s so much that I don’t remember because I was very young when it started,need advice and your prayers, I had a friend ask me to speak a couple of months ago,but when I start talking to someone about what happened I can’t do nothing but cry,but I know it’s disobedience to not obey the Lord, and I want to help women and children that’s been threw what I’ve been threw,and the Lord has opened the door threw my friend with the women’s ministry I’m just afraid, please have me in your prayers.

    1. Hey Cassandra! Thank you so much for sharing your heart with me. Stepping out has been a journey of 27 years. It was a series of baby steps that led to what people see as “this leap of faith’. It has taken much time in prayer and being in the Lord’s presence to heal from some devastating hurt that occurred during that time. The Lord called me to ‘speak and write’ long before I got to ‘speak and write’. Do you think the Lord is calling you to Himself in order to heal SO you can share your testimony with others? It is a process to get to the place of healing where we can speak and share in a way that ministers to others. Is it possible your friend is being used of the Lord to ‘call you to heal so you can minister to others’? She can see you in ministry! She can see the end result! That is a beautiful and exciting thing! But sometimes there is work to do in preparation. I think your reaching out to me and wrestling with your friend’s invitation is part of walking in obedience to the Lord! May I encourage you to bring all these feelings, fears and hurt before the throne of Grace and wait upon Him? Ask Him to reveal the ‘next right step’ so that you may walk in obedience? He is faithful to reveal Himself and His will to us when we seek Him openly with our whole hearts! Yes, I will continue to pray for you, dear one! Let me pray for you now, too. “Gracious Father, thank you for Cassandra’s willingness to serve you in obedience. I pray you would reveal your perfect timing to her for stepping into ministry. Draw her to yourself and heal the broken places so she can speak with confidence and authority to reach other women and children. May she be salt and light in a dark and hurting world. Use her to point others to you, Jesus! I pray for strength for her and courage to take the next right step as you direct. May your perfect love cast out all fear that Cassandra is experiencing. We pray this in the precious and powerful name of our Lord Jesus Christ! Amen.” May I follow up with you, Cassandra, to see how you are doing via email?

      1. Patti, you spoke of preparation for ministry, I know it involves prayer,being in the Lord’s presence and much study of the word,would there be anythanything else I need to consider? And you spoke of my friend, I’m not really for sure,I just know that I’ve always had a need to help women and protect women and children from the things I’ve been threw.In October of 2016 the Lord gave me a vision I could see myself in a stage in front of a crowd of women speaking about my testimony,(thst was a wow moment for me lol)so yes I think it involves helping women and children from past trama’s and hurts.Thank you for your ministry. And thank you for applying back to my message, God Bless.

        1. Hi Cassandra,
          Per your permission on your other comment, I’m going to move this conversation into a private emailed message to you! (I am hoping to email within a day or so!) That way, we can share with a little more depth.
          Love you and your courage, Cassandra!

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