Drop Your Nets

There’s a story in the Bible about this guy, Peter, who was at first named Simon. And his brother, Andrew. They were out fishing… but not because fishing was a hobby or just because it was fun for them… they were fisherman. It was their job. It was how they made money, how they ate food, how they put a roof over their head.

So they are out fishing, just as every other day. The water on the Sea of Galilee was rather calm, the wind was slightly blowing, and they could smell the familiar scent of salt in the air.

They had just cast a net into the ocean, and were hoping to catch a good amount of fish.

But.

They heard a voice in the distance. They heard a voice they had never heard before, yet it sounded so familiar.

“Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”

And what is said next, when read with a fresh set of eyes, is utterly shocking.

Immediately, they left their nets and followed him.

 

It doesn’t make sense.

Their entire life was staked in their fishing.

Their entire income, their food, their house…. Was all riding on that net that was in the water.

They were committed. They had responsibilities. They had their life all together, and it was going really well.

And then they hear this voice calling them away…. And they left with no hesitation.

And they followed this guy. This guy named Jesus.

 

My dear friends. I think that it’s a no-brainer that when we read this story, that we all think and say that if we were in that position, that we would do the same thing.

Yes, I would drop my nets.

Yes, I would follow.

Yes, I would give up everything I have, everything I own, all of my very life…. All for Jesus.

 

And it’s really, really easy and weightless to say it in that moment, because we are still sitting so comfortably in our office, in our classroom, in our cozy house and in the realm of our five year plan.

My dear friends, I am writing this to you in the rare case that you are Simon Peter. And in the rare case that this guy Jesus tells you to drop everything you have and to follow Him.

I’m writing this to you if you know Jesus is literally calling you to walk away from your entire life, and you are scared and confused and hesitant.

 

Because that’s exactly where I’m at right now.

I’m in college right now. (Or at least, I was.)

I went to college in Arizona, and I had two years left.

I had a place to live. I have a job at a coffee shop. I am a cheer coach. I have my friends, my rhythm, my favorite shops and restaurants. I literally created a life there. I had invested time and money there. (Yes, college tuition.)

 

I had my net down in the sea. I’ve been praying to catch good fish out there.

But.

I heard a voice in the distance. It sounded familiar.

“Follow me, and I will make you a fisher of men.”

 

And I knew immediately.

I didn’t understand immediately. But I knew.

God was calling me. He was calling me to abandon everything. And to follow Him.

Simon Peter didn’t know where they were going. Or why they were going. Or even why it was necessary to give up everything.

But, that voice was just so compelling.

“Follow me.”

 

My friends, Jesus only asks one person in the entirety of the New Testament to go and sell everything he owns.

And my friend, Jesus did not and does not ask everyone to abandon everything and follow Him to something different.

But, don’t put it past Him.

The Lord of Lords and the King of Kings… more importantly the Lord of your life and the King of your heart has every single right and all authority and grace to tell you drop your nets and follow.

And I’m writing this to you, if He’s calling to you.

I dropped out of college two weeks ago.

And I’m not going to sugarcoat this. It was an insanely brutal decision. Or rather, it was a brutal process to work through. I guess I knew right away, right when I heard that compelling, sweet voice from afar, that I would drop out.

But, the process of working through that in my head and in my heart… not to mention filling out the papers and cutting the ties with all of my commitments…. was the hardest thing I’ve ever done.

It ate away at my heart for two weeks. I questioned my decision repeatedly. I tried talking myself out of it. I felt uneasy and like there was a war in my heart.

 

But my friend, there’s just something so compelling about that voice.

I know that voice. As do you.

And if you hear that voice, you can trust it. You can trust it wholeheartedly. You are free to surrender every part of yourself to that sweet voice.

You are free to drop everything.

You are free to be reckless for the Gospel.

You are free to be free.

 

If God is calling you to drop everything, I want you to know that you aren’t going to understand.

I want you to know that it’s not going to be easy.

I want you to know that you’re going to look at the comfortable, good life you are living, and cling to it.

But my dear sister, His voice is better. It’s sweeter.

The cost of the Gospel will be paid back in double at the gates of the Kingdom.

This life is so, so, so, so short compared to our eternal life at Home.

 

“We have all of eternity to celebrate our victories, but only one short hour before sunset in which to win them.”

Which means, if the King is asking you to follow Him for the sake of the Gospel, my girl, you better go.

This life is too short to not go.

The cost of people going to hell is too high to not go.

The stakes of the Kingdom are too tall to not go.

The idea of people never hearing the name of Jesus is too brutal to not go.

So, my friend, drop your nets and follow Him.

But only if you hear His calling you.

There’s a difference in being foolishly reckless and reckless for the Gospel.

 

“Follow me.”

If you hear that voice, you know it’s too familiar, too sweet, too good and pure, too fierce to not follow.

It’s compelling.

Go, my friend.

Let the voice that breathed life into you lead you on.

And if you don’t know where, just take a step towards the voice, towards your sweet Jesus.

He will show you the rest.

 

 

He’s worth our entire life.

My dear sister, go be reckless for the Gospel.

And I’ll meet you at the gates of the Kingdom.

And we won’t regret a thing.

 

With much, much love. And hands empty from dropping my net. –Melissa

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4 thoughts on “Drop Your Nets

  1. Where is the ‘love’ button? 😉
    In all seriousness though, please pray for me as I am in this very place and have been for a while now…I’ve had a difficult time giving my full being to Jesus but I know He’s calling. Pray that my heart would be renewed and my being transformed to joyfully commit and lay down my life for Him. Thank you for writing this blog. Our Lord IS calling His children to rise up…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ashly,
      I love this response! I love your honesty. It’s so hard to let it all go. I have deep faith that God has such beautiful things for you to do for His Kingdom! It’s waiting for you- and will rest there until you are ready to reach for it.
      Praying for you to have boldness and courage and faith that will lead you into the full grasp of God. His perfect peace will hold you steady all the way through.
      Love that last line- I just got chills. “Our Lord is calling His children to rise up..” SO TRUE.
      Keep me updated on everything the Lord is doing in your heart. Much love!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you so much for this post, Melissa, and for listening to the voice of God.

    I’ve been feeling a similar pull to follow Jesus wholeheartedly and to not be afraid of big decisions that are “in the realm of my five year plan.” He’s already flipped my life upside-down since college, and I know he’s going to do it again. He’s put an awareness on my heart to stay on my toes—to be ready and free to move where he leads—and an accompanying peace that only comes from following Him in the right time with the right heart attitude. I’m ready; I’m waiting for His command.

    Congratulations. Celebrate your uncontested commitment to Jesus every single day. Never forget His voice and His direction. Celebrate that you’ve been chosen for this very purpose. Celebrate that you’ve thrown off your net for This Life, and praise the Lord that you’ve picked up heaven’s net—the net for Fishers of Men. Hold tight, and never let go.

    Like

    1. Toni,
      Wow! Thank you so much for these beautiful words! It’s such a terrifyingly free thing to drop everything and follow. But so rewarding. And so liberating! Love how you said to celebrate- it’s such a good response. Laying down our life to find our life is for sure a cause of celebration. I love how you are staying on your toes, being ready to go whenever He calls you. He loves that and will never waste a willing heart and life. I appreciate you and your heart!! MUCH LOVE, my friend!

      Like

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