Get Outta the Boat
Boat Dwelling. Recently I was looking at the account of Jesus calling the first disciples. In short: Jesus is walking along the Sea of Galilee, and sees Simon (Peter) and his brother Andrew fishing and calls out to them, “Come, follow Me and I will make you fishers of men.” These fishermen left their nets and followed Him. It goes on to say, a short distance away, He also saw James and John (they too were brothers) they were with their father Zebedee and some hired men, in a boat, working on their nets. Jesus called them. They crawled out of the boat, left their father and followed Jesus. (Matthew 4:18-22; Mark 1:16-20)
When I read these stories, I began to wonder why, why when Jesus called to James and John; they were the only ones getting out of the boat. Zebedee and the hired men were also in the boat, yet it says nothing about calling them by name. Maybe Jesus looked them right in the eyes, or perhaps quite possibly, He pointed, waving only the brothers in (Nothing like a holy pointing). The region they were in was a well-populated fishing area, so there were many folks around, however, they knew Jesus was talking to …them. I wonder if the guys said out loud to one another, “Why isn’t anyone else getting out of their boats?” Even so, without hesitation, they climbed down and out. The story’s emphasis is not about who stayed, it is about who went.
As I thought of this, I sensed the Lord calling us out, that we too have us some boats. Our boat may represent security, just as it did for the fishermen. Leaving the boat meant the ‘unknown.’ We too have been called out by the Master to follow HIM – even while others are still in the boat… we are to get out and follow!
May we too become boat leavers and not boat lovers, staying put, secure and comfortable and not budging. Yes, life outside the boat can be scary, but let’s leave our self-defining safe place, and step out: Start that ministry, join that small group, teach the kids at church, invite that family over for dinner, and actually speak to the clerk at the store about Jesus. My following Jesus may look different from yours, but that is the beauty, He makes us unique in Him, “Come, follow Me and I will make you…” (Teacher, lawyer, clerk, bookkeeper, parking attendant, student, mom, dad)
Like the story above mentioned, Peter left his nets and followed Jesus, we see him later leaving a boat – we often tease others about being fearful like Peter, but stop the scene… where is he? He is out of the boat. The only one, who got out, took a chance and headed for Jesus. Just keep your eyes on HIM! (Matthew 14)
Have a God-loving, getting outta the boat, weekend.
In Him, DeDe (“Let us consider how we may spur one another one towards love & good deeds.” – Hebrews 10:24)