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.
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!
- Today, I have the great privilege to guest on Suzie Eller’s blog! Find more of her beautiful content at www.tsuzanneeller.com.
- Learn about the devotional at http://tsuzanneeller.com/books/comewithmedevo/ .
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