Sunday, February 6, 2011

Accepting the Invitation to Follow Jesus

And going on from thence, he saw other two brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and he called them.  And they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him. -Matthew 4:21, 22 (KJV)

Accepting Jesus' invitation to follow Him means that we are willing to trust God with our very lives and our future.  A great many people have mapped out their lives and thought they had everything all figured out, but then they found out that the Lord had other plans for them.  Many people thought they were going to do this or that in life, but then they met Jesus Christ and their plans changed.  Jesus invites us to step out of what might be to what God would have us to be.  Christ invites us to leave what we thought was right in favor of what God has in mind for us.
Following Jesus is about dying to self, taking up His cross, and following Him.  We die to self, but we may also die physically for our faith as countless people have down through the ages.  I have read about the first missionaries who went into parts of Africa and the Amazon jungles and how many of them were killed outright.  Some were even cannibalized.  But yet they were willing to go and share the gospel even if it meant dying for that cause.  Would we be willing to do that?  Would we go and share the gospel even if it meant dying?  When we follow Christ we have to be aware that we may in fact suffer just such a fate.  But we would die having been faithful to what Christ has called us to do. 

Jesus calls us to be faithful and He then takes care of the rest.  Think about all the people around us who don’t know the Lord and who need to have someone share with them the gospel.  The fields are as Jesus said, ripe for the harvest (John 4:35).  As Jesus said, we can pray that God will send workers out into the fields that souls will be saved for the kingdom of God.    

Do not be discouraged and do not give up, for the Lord will always empower us and will always strengthen us to do the work and to do His will.

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