Text: Luke 5:1-11
For not being afraid/growing in trust
For international missions
One of the things that mark out God’s personality is that he calls people to walk and work with him as he seeks to redeem the world he has made. And one of the things that is consistent in each of the call stories the Bible tells is that people react with anxiety, doubt, and fear to God’s call in their lives. Are you calling me, Lord? Why are you calling me? I am not able; I do not have the skill; I am of no importance or reputation; this is too dangerous. Truthfully, one of the most common phrases found when God calls people to walk and work with him is “do not be afraid.”
But if “do not be afraid” is one side of the coin when God calls someone to walk and work with him, the flip side of that coin is “trust me.” “Trust me,” God says to Abraham. “Trust me,” God says to Moses. “Trust me,” God says to Jonah. “Trust me,” God says to the nation of Israel. “Trust me,” God says to Mary, to Peter, to Paul. “Trust me,” God says to us, trust me the way that Jesus trusts me.
But it is hard to trust, isn’t it? We look out at the world and maybe think to ourselves, or maybe say out loud, to go out there, to engage the world, to give of myself is impossible. We are afraid. Sometimes our fear is about ourselves, that we have nothing worthwhile to offer, that we are inadequate. We do not answer the call because we are afraid that what we believe about ourselves will be confirmed. Sometimes we are afraid of others, afraid to give up control, afraid to be vulnerable, afraid to let go what we have so carefully accumulated. We do not answer the call because we are afraid that what we believe about others will be confirmed.
Do not be afraid. Trust me.
The truth is that God will not leave us in our fears, whether it is about our own inadequacies or the inadequacies of others. If you are being called by God—and by virtue of your baptism, you are—then God will provide what is needed if you lack something, and God will provide if you let go of something. Because with our Lord there is always a “from this point onward.” Consider the story of Jesus and Peter. Peter, aware of his inadequacies, begs Jesus to depart. Jesus ignores him, and instead offers a promise. A promise! “From this point onward, you…” and the rest is history.
What is God promising to you? How would you fill in the blank after “from this point onward…?
Easter joy ~ Pr. Dave Brooks