Sometime our lives become so busy we forget about the reason why we followed Christ, or why we should begin to follow him today. Like many things in life, it is good to go back and re-experience them or be reminded why we fell in love, enjoyed or became a part of something. There are many aspects to following Christ and it is good to go back in order to move forward.
Our following Christ as his disciples reminds us of the story of Simon (Peter) and Andrew in Matthew 4:18 – 20. “Jesus said to them, ‘Come with me. I’ll make a new kind of fisherman out of you. I’ll show you how to catch men and women instead of perch and bass.’ They didn’t ask questions, but simply dropped their nets and followed” (Him). NIV link here.
There are way more than four advantages to following Christ; these are just the ones I chose to focus on. In the same way that Jesus called the disciples including Simon called Peter and Andrew his brother and James and John; He is calling you and I to follow Him. Will you leave your life’s net behind and follow him? The four advantages to following Christ, you can expect Him to (*):
1) Transform you – God desires not just to a better person, but become a person of character and faith. Transformation is where it all began in our spiritual journey. We used to be messed up, broke, emotionally hurting and defeated; but now God has taken that which was broken and put the pieces back together again. Simply, that Christ’s power changed our lives and that all things became new. See 2 Corinthians 5:17. He is changing us and desires to continue to change us to be the person He created us to be.
2) Make you Useful – Our society continually reminds us to live for ourselves and to take action that is good for you. The reality God made you with a purpose, His desire is that you would become useful and make a difference in the world. To do something good for someone else that you are not an accident, you are not a mistake but God has a purpose for you and your life can impact others and the world. God says that he knew you while you were still in your mother’s womb, He knew you. He came as the light of the world and desires for us to set up His kingdom of light and destroy darkness.
3) Mold you – The disciples did not realize what they were getting into, when they left the family business behind and followed Christ. In fact, Adalaide Pollard hoping to go to Africa in 1902 struggling to raise funds for the missionary endeavor wrote this song. . .
Have thine own way, Lord! Have thine own way,
Thou art the Potter, I am the clay, Mold me and make me after thy will,
While I am waiting, yielded and still.
God desires to mold our lives like a potter does clay. Could it be that your problem, situation that you face is not really your problem? But something God has set in your life to mold you into the person He wants you to become? The pressure that you feel, is actually the potter’s hand shaping and molding you to be the cup, vase, or pot that He is needing you to become.
4) Send you – God does not develop you and teach you for you to sit on your experiences and life’s lessons and do nothing. He is sending you into a place that needs encouragement, love, justice and hope despite situations, pain and disappointments. Whether you are a singer, a writer or a friend, God desires you to leave the net of your life and follow Him.
I believe that our prayer today should be. . . “God, take my live, my dreams, my hopes and make them yours. God help me follow you not just today, and tomorrow; but each and every day of my life. Will you transform me, make me useful, mold me and send me? Help me make a difference in the lives of people. In your name, Amen.”
* As I shared in a recent while ministering at Carpenter’s Shop International Church.