Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” 11 So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.
At studentsoul Auckland the church I am trying to plant, we are working through Luke's gospel. this week we are up to looking at Luke's account of the calling of those first disciples.
I have to admit that I found myself really relating to the first half of Peter's reply to Jesus on being asked to go out into the deep and fish... "“Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything." I hope i have the sense of Jesus to say "But because you say so, I will let down the nets." and even more to continue to emulate Peter and his partners when they "leave everything and follow him."
But I was struck by Joel Greens commentary on v.11 when he says that in "leaving all that has been of value, they will now find their fundamental sense of belonging being in relationship to Jesus, (and) the community being built around him and his missional purpose".
I sense that I and in many ways the church in the west has been willing to find our identity and community based round a relationship with Jesus, but have forgotten that we are called to be the community based round "his missional purpose".
If I may use a metaphor I used in a sermon a few years back... we are called to be a 'blues brothers' church. A place where people see the light (like Jake and Ellwood do as they come to Triple Rock Baptist Church) and from that time onwards we are to be a people who are "on a mission from God".
The hope for me comes from Peter's response (echoing Isaiah's in Isaiah 6) to Jesus " I am a sinner" and Jesus response not to reject but to invite and call.