Come, Follow Me
In this reading, Jesus calls four ordinary people out of their ordinary lives. “Come, follow me,” he says (NIV). There was no introduction, no description of what they were being called to do, no map of where they were going, no explanation of why they were being called. Just, “Come, follow me.” And they did! Would we have followed?
Several things can be noted. Jesus’ call requires our giving up the desire for answers and certainty because Jesus’ call usually results in more questions than answers. There is no certainty of what happens next. God knows more than we do, though, and can be trusted to guide us and care for us along the way. Jesus’ call is often costly and difficult. It can result in going places we would rather not go, speaking words we would rather not speak, and confronting people and situations we would rather not confront. We can trust that God will strengthen and defend us on even the most perilous journey. Jesus’ call is into an unknown tomorrow. We don’t know what the results of following the call will be. But we are called to say “yes” and to follow anyway.
Trust is the key. Simon, Andrew, James, and John knew that. They followed without hesitation into an uncertain future. They didn’t second-guess the one doing the calling. They didn’t allow anxiety over the unknown to overwhelm them. They trusted. That trust made all the difference. When Jesus calls, trust in God’s love and care. Allow trust to propel you to say, “Yes, Lord, I’ll follow.”
God of the journey, help me to trust you to guide, protect, and love me along the way—wherever you may lead. In Jesus’ loving name. Amen.
Things are not always as they seem. To Jonah, the people of Nineveh seem beyond hope, so he runs away rather than going to preach to them. But God has other plans. To Jonah’s surprise, the Ninevites turn to God. In our eyes, social standing and wealth may seem to divide people into different classes, but the psalmist declares that in God’s economy all are equal. Paul echoes the theme of the temporary nature of all things in this life; they should not be our source of security. Jesus opens his ministry in Mark by proclaiming that God is breaking into history to overthrow what has been accepted as the way things are. Sometimes God’s perspective is not our perspective.
Read Jonah 3:1-10. Can you think of a time when you sensed God calling you to do something you didn’t want to do? How did you respond?
Read Psalm 62:5-12. How have you experienced God’s “awesome deeds” in your life? What is your response?
Read 1 Corinthians 7:29-31. What distracts you from focusing on God? How might you reorder your priorities?
Read Mark 1:14-20. What might have led Simon, Andrew, James, and John to immediately stop what they were doing and follow Jesus? Are there things that make you hesitate in following Jesus’ call to you?
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