. . . and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.” – Luke 5:10 (ESV)
Peter seemed to be destined to be a fisherman. It was the family business after all. He was working with his brothers, and they were at least doing enough business to stay in business rather than having to work for someone else. However, everything changed in an instant as an unheard-of teacher came and informed Peter that from now on he would still be a fisherman of sorts, but he would be fishing for souls. The tradesman would become first a disciple and later an evangelist. How many of us would feel confident during this kind of transition?
For one thing, the skill sets were entirely different. Peter would have been used to working with his hands, but his new calling was to be a student and then a teacher. It does not seem that he would have had all of the formal training that we would expect from an evangelist today.
Another practical consideration involved income. Being a disciple of Jesus did not provide a large salary, and Peter not only had to worry about himself but also supporting his wife. It is difficult to not know how you are going to pay for your next meal.
Nevertheless, Peter was still willing to follow this man that he really knew nothing about at the time. All he had heard from Jesus was that he needed to follow, and he was going to go into the soul-winning business.
He had to step out and trust Jesus during this time of transition.
In the same way, we might find ourselves in these types of situations. Whether it is a change of major, a change of university or a change of career, there are many questions that flood our minds. We wonder if we have the talent or the resources to successfully execute this transition. We wonder how we’re going to provide for ourselves and our families. We wonder if we are even making the right decision in the first place.
For me, this took place as I began to pursue my MBA and kind of lost my excitement. It wasn’t necessarily that I didn’t enjoy business, but I felt like there was something different that I should be doing. I wasn’t quite sure what it was, but then I saw that there was a new apologetics program opening at Houston Baptist University. I knew I liked apologetics, but I also knew that an MBA would be much more professionally practical. Nevertheless, I could not shake this opportunity from my mind, and despite the questions I initially had, I felt like I was being called to work in this particular way.
I had to make a decision based on really something that was rather undefined. We simply do not know how everything is going to work out, but like Peter, we need to trust in the call of Jesus Christ. For me, I wasn’t sure what exactly I intended to do as an apologist, but I felt like something I had to do.
When Jesus calls, our responsibility is to follow. Our responsibility is not to design the path, and our responsibility is not to define where the end ought to be. Quite simply, we are called to follow Christ, and He will transform our lives. We might not get rich, and we might not get famous, but like Peter, we need to put our trust in the Lord of the universe. It might not always seem like the easiest thing to do either, but it will provide the stability that we cannot give ourselves in these challenging times.
What difficult transition do you have in your life that you need to give to God and seek His guidance?
Dear Lord, thank you for being there for us in these times of transition. Thank you for guiding us through times where we seem to have no idea where the end will be. Please grant us your peace and stability as we continue to seek and to follow your will. Amen.