Mark 1:16-20
16As Jesus walked beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen.  17“Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.”  18At once they left their nets and followed him.
19When he had gone a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John in a boat, preparing their nets.  20Without delay he called them, and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men and followed him.
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Simon, Andrew, James, and John were typical human beings working hard to earn some money so they could live a customary life.  But they also possessed something atypical of today’s culture: they listened and they obeyed.

“At once they left their nets and followed him.”  Remarkable!  I often say that if the Christian life were more about accomplishing some physical task it would be easier.  However, God has once again put me in my place; I do not think I would have the strength or faith to leave everything I ever knew and follow a complete stranger who claimed to be the Messiah.  Yet these disciples left “at once” and “without delay” never looking back.  For “no one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the Kingdom of God” (Luke 9:62).  So that’s it then.  There’s no hope to ever be beneficial to the Kingdom of God; at least, for me personally.  Or is there?

I have disobeyed God so many times, becoming lukewarm to the equivalence of a comfortable shower.  I choose not to listen to God because I’m selfish and don’t want to undergo the difficulty and patience it takes to truly hear God.  I am too busy with my life; too busy casting my net toward worldly things; too busy to make time for God.  The worst part is that I claim to be a Christian, yet I continually break God’s commands.  I do not love my neighbor as myself; I do not love God with all my heart, soul, strength, and mind.  I am a hypocrite, a Pharisee.  What good am I to the Kingdom of God

But I believe there is still hope.

Look at Simon, also called Peter, who left immediately to follow Jesus.  Remember Peter?  He is the same guy that disowned Jesus three times, who was rebuked by Jesus (“Get behind me, Satan!”), and the same guy who God used to change the world.  In John 21:15-19, Peter is reinstated by Jesus.  The three times Jesus asks Peter, “Do you love me?” He is “making up” for the three times Peter disowned Him.  After a while, Peter is hurt by these continual questions.  And aren’t we?  Do we not feel hurt when we recall the death Jesus died for us, yet look around and see that we are still living our lives selfishly?  Do we not feel hurt, deep down in our soul, when we remember that each lash of the whip He endured was for us?  Yet only after the hurt, after the brokenness, does Jesus fully and completely reinstate Peter with the same two words He used to first call him: “Follow Me!"

God is a god of second chances!  What grace there is in knowing the Son of God!  What hope we have in believing in the Messiah!  What a life we shall live when we truly follow Him!

O God, I am a sinner worthy only of the depths of Your wrath.  O Lord Jesus, I am unworthy to be Your disciple.  Please, God, cleanse me from my sin and my selfish ways.  Break my will to do evil and mold me to do good; to love and to serve You, Jesus!  Just like You saved Peter time-and-time again, please do not tire of saving me!  “Savior, please keep saving me!”