“Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, “It is the Lord!” As soon as Simon Peter heard him say, “It is the Lord,” he wrapped his outer garment around him (for he had taken it off) and jumped into the water.” John 21:7
When Peter heard that it was Jesus on the shore, he left behind the fish he’d worked so hard to catch and immediately jumped overboard to be with Jesus.
Real tests often come when we’ve accomplished our goals; our nets are full, our name and reputation are spoken well of, and we feel we have “arrived” in life or in our career. But what happens when Jesus appears and invites us to join Him elsewhere? Do we stay in the boat with our accomplishments- or do we jump in the water and swim to follow Him?
The answers to these questions depend largely on two things: 1) Our desire to stay with the blessings and accomplishments God has given us, and 2) Our willingness to risk it all to follow the One who blessed us in the first place.
Are we more interested in the giver or the gifts?
I had accomplished my department’s objectives in my first two years of employment and was enjoying all the benefits of success. Then suddenly, God opened a door to another job opportunity. I and others prayed about the decision before accepting it. God made it clear to me that I was to leave my fish in the boat and jump overboard and go where He was leading me. I wasn’t easy, but I chose to trust Him completely with my future.
“Whatever you’re willing to walk away from ultimately determines what God can trust you with.” Wendy Bradley
I chose the giver over the gift. I jumped …and I never looked back.
Five weeks later, the new company I joined imploded. The day I was let go from my job was the day I arrived at the shore and found Jesus waiting for me. I was perplexed. I thought I had misunderstood His calling. He reminded me to trust Him completely with my future, for He was calling me to join Him in the “wilderness” to speak tenderly to me.
For two years, I spent every day in God’s presence as He walked me through a challenging season of life. My relationship with God grew more intimately and the experience forever changed my life. I’ve never once regretted jumping in and leaving my fish- I found Jesus to be more than enough!
Our attachment to accomplishments and possessions will fade as we place our focus on Christ.
Is Jesus calling you to leave behind your fish and those who want to stay with them so you can follow Him? Remember- when you reach the shore, you’ll find He has everything you will ever need… and more!
Do you have the courage to jump in?
“Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.” Matthew 6:33