July 27, 2020

Learning To Follow Well

Written by Boyd Bailey

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – July 27, 2020

Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!” And they left their nets at once and followed him. Matthew 4:19-20

A friend of mine had planned a fly fishing trip to Jackson Hole, Wyoming. When a cancellation occurred, he generously invited me to fill the spot, most expenses paid! When I walked off the plane I was greeted by the Teton Mountains with their rugged white faces gazing toward heaven with stoic reverence. Wow! The next few days I enjoyed the company of old and new friends. I also learned from the fishing guides who knew how to set me up for success—if I attentively followed their instructions and example. Being teachable, adaptable and faithful brought fish into the boat along with giddy excitement. 

Why did Jesus call fishermen to follow Him? Maybe because of their diligence and discipline, or their ability to connect with most people with a humble heart and modest lifestyle. Whatever the reasons, they left their respected and successful vocation to follow a man who would change the world for God’s glory. When Jesus called, they listened and obeyed His special invitation. With their call came a promise to show them how to love and serve people. Faithful followers leave their comfortable circumstances and cleave to Christ’s call to know Him, through the unknown.

If you refuse to take up your cross and follow me, you are not worthy of being mine. If you cling to your life, you will lose it; but if you give up your life for me, you will find it” (Matthew 10:38-39, NLT).

To be a good follower of Jesus is to be coachable, adaptable and faithful. Coachable, so as not to forget there is always a truth to better understand when growing as a follower of Jesus and lover of people. Or learning to totally let go of control may be your next step to a closer walk with Christ. Adaptable disciples do not complain about sudden change, but instead look for where the Lord is at work and join Him. Transitions at work may require a new set of skills to be successful in the new normal. Your child may not be a child anymore, so he needs for you to give him more freedom to fail and learn from his mistakes. Trust Jesus by remaining faithful to first follow Him.

The end goal of following Jesus is helping others follow Jesus. Fishing for people is the picture of an attractive life full of love that invites others to be curious to know why you do what you do. Our fishing guide was very perceptive to change flies based on the weather conditions, season of the year and time of day. In the same way, our love that flows from following Jesus will take on different applications based on a person’s perspective and receptivity of heart. Love is the Lord’s lure to draw hungry hearts to Himself, so the Spirit can “set the hook” in their soul. Lift up Jesus with your loving life to show the Father’s love. Follow Jesus, so others can come to know him! 

“So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples” (John 13:34-35).

Prayer

Dear Jesus, I want to follow you well so I can help others follow you well, in your name I pray, amen.


Related Reading

Deuteronomy 5:32; Proverbs 20:7; Matthew 5:11; Ephesians 5:1-3

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