Do you like to fish? I used to fish some when I was younger, but I never liked to put the worm on the hook, I wouldn’t take the fish off the hook if I caught one, and I hated waiting for a fish to bite. I guess that doesn’t make me a very good fisherman, does it? But did you know that Jesus was a sort of fisherman too? Not the kind you might expect because He was “fishing” for people to follow Him.
One day as Jesus was walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, He saw two brothers – Simon Peter and Andrew. They were throwing nets into the water to try to catch fish because they were both fishermen. That was how they made their living. Jesus called to them and said, “Come, follow Me, and I will make you a different kind of fishermen. You will bring in people, not fish!” (Mark 1:14-20) Simon Peter and Andrew immediately dropped what they were doing and followed Jesus.
Then as Jesus, Simon Peter, and Andrew continued to walk along the shore, they saw two other brothers – James and John, sitting in their boat mending their nets with their father. Jesus called out to those two brothers to come along as well. They also dropped their nets, left their father and boat, and followed Jesus.
These were the first of Jesus’ disciples. They left their everyday lives to follow and learn from Jesus. Then later they told the world about the love of the Savior, Jesus Christ. We are called to be “fishers of men” too. Jesus wants us to show and tell others about Him. Did you ever think of yourself as a disciple of Christ and fisherman for people? We are – at Christ’s command. Be a good disciple by doing what Jesus wants us to do every day and telling others what Jesus has done for you. We may not be able to see Jesus in person, but others can see Him in you when you are kind and loving. You may be the Jesus that people see today! That is awesome to think about and also a great responsibility when you think about it. Jesus is so proud of us when we try to represent Him as He really is in our lives.
I may not be a very good fisherman for fish, but I hope and pray that I can be a good fisherman for people, so they can love Jesus and know of His love for them. I hope and pray that for you too!
Let’s pray. Dear Jesus, thank You for showing us how to be fishermen for people, so everyone will learn about You. Help us to be good at showing and telling others how You love and forgive us. Let us be the best kind of fishermen possible – reeling in others to You! In Your name we pray, Amen.
Ann Moody is a retired pastor, formerly of the Wilkesville First Presbyterian Church and the Middleport First Presbyterian Church. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author.