Following Jesus’ call
At the beginning of today’s reading, John the Baptist has been arrested and thrown into jail. Jesus has started proclaiming the good news (which sounds a lot like the message John had been preaching).
The kingdom of God is NEAR!
Jesus passes along the Sea of Galilee and starts calling his disciples: Simon, Andrew, James and John.
We hear a lot today about making your resume “pop,” writing up your experience to get hired. I thought about the “credentials” of the men Jesus was calling. Are those really people you would want to hire if you were a CEO? What sort of questions would you ask these simple fishermen?
“So, tell me a little about your academic background? Where did you study and what degrees did you earn?”
Well….I’m a fisherman.
“What sort of public speaking experience have you had? You will need to talk to large crowds and persuade them to think about their beliefs.”
Hmmmm…….yep, well, I didn’t talk much to the fish.
“What about your medical background? Have you ever healed anyone? Raised someone from the dead?”
These fishermen don’t really seem to be qualified to do much for God’s kingdom. However, Jesus calls them and says “Follow me.”
And they do!
Immediately (Mark says)….
And if you look ahead to the Acts of the Apostles, you will see these simple fishermen doing amazing things! The important thing to remember is that Jesus didn’t select folks that were perhaps the most qualified. If he had been looking for the most learned, the most gifted people of his time, perhaps he could have been more picky. Perhaps he would have looked somewhere else, somewhere where there would be “important” people.
Instead, he called followers who were faithful. And they left everything–immediately–to do the work to which Jesus was calling them.
And he gave them what they would need to do the work he was giving them to do.
There’s an old saying that Jesus doesn’t call the equipped. He equips the called.
Sometimes we think that maybe we aren’t qualified to do the work Jesus would have us do. Maybe that is for other people who are smarter, stronger, more talented. It is important to remember the first disciples. They followed and were faithful.
May we likewise listen for Jesus’ call to us and be ready–immediately!–to drop everything and follow.