As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,“ Jesus said, ”and I will make you fishers of men.” At once they left their nets and followed him. Going from there ,he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him. – Matthew 4:18-22
What was it about Jesus that made them leave everything and follow him? Everything, even dad. Was it simply the fact that he was a Rabbi and to be called to be a student of a Rabbi was a big deal in those days, so you just don’t say no to that? Or was there just something about Him? Something they could not shake. Something they could not ignore? He called, they followed.
Why do I follow Jesus? What is it about Him that draws me? He is not standing in flesh in front of me. It is not a status changer, nor does it bring greater respect. There is something about Him though. Something I can not shake. Something I can not ignore. Hope. Peace. Strength. Joy. When I press into His presence, it flames a spark deep within me. I feel alive. When I listen to Him, when I worship Him, there is life. There is much to this day to day living that can easily become mundane. Life with Jesus, however, is never dull. It’s not always easy, but it is never boring.
S. J. Hill writes in Enjoying God, “We read in Proverbs 20:27 that ‘the spirit of man is the candle of the Lord’ (KJV). A candle is only beeswax until it is lit. It can be highly processed beeswax, but it’s beeswax nonetheless. The human spirit, with all its yearnings, remains unfulfilled until it’s lit by the divine flame.”
I love that. A candle can spread sweet aroma and bring warmth and light in the darkest, coldest place, once it is lit.
Hill goes on to write, “The human heart was made for passion. It was created for relationship. It was designed to experience the fullness of God… Creator of the universe – the One who created things that man has yet to discover – never wanted you to live a life of perpetual boredom. Religion is boring. Living with a holy, “wild” God is exciting. He’s out there. I mean, out there. And He does things you don’t expect Him to do…He provides you with enough awesome promises, hope and strength to endure anything and take you anywhere.”
And that about says it all for me. Life is too short to sit on the sidelines. I want to be a part of the Kingdom of God being revealed today. I want to stand on the front lines of the battle field and live a life that is out there, lifting up the lonely, feeding the hungry, comforting the hurting, loving, serving, playing, singing, laughing, crying, dancing, risking and hoping. I want to follow Jesus, into the great unknown and stand with heart abandoned, in awe of the one who gave it all. I want to be a part of changing the world. That is why I follow.
I pray your spirit too will be lit by the divine flame!