Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men. (Mark 1:17)
I’ve been reading Jane Pauley’s book Your Life Calling. It’s about people re-imagining (and re-imaging) their lives after retirement (Tom Brokow recommended it in his book A Lucky Life Interupted). It’s amazing the transformations people make after most of us think it’s impossible to change!
My youngest sister loves to fish. I find that incredible since she never fished growing up and didn’t know anyone who fished until she was fifty. In the past year she has learned to bait her own hook and take the fish off. She called me last week, the day before her birthday, to share her excitement about that day’s catch.
Lives can change . . . if you are willing.
Jesus’ call to his disciples in our text is often overlooked as just a figure of speech. The disciples were fishermen, Jesus just called them to catch something different.
But perhaps there’s something else. Fishing is great for the fisherman. Not so much for the fish. For the fish, it is a life altering event: a change of environment, death, and a change of state. It’s what would happen to the disciples. It’s what the preaching of the disciples would effect in others. As followers of Jesus we must first be the change we seek in others. But our job is not just to be changed, but to become involved in effecting the same change in the lives of our friends and relatives as we bring them to Jesus. That’s really what being a fisher of men is all about. For all of us who have accepted Jesus’ call, it’s what we are called to do and be.