And Jesus, walking by the Sea of Galilee, saw two brothers, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. Then He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.”Matthew 4:18–19
My son James is a fisherman and has been since he was a young boy. When he was about four years old, he started learning a lot about fishing by watching fishing shows on Saturday mornings. One of my favorite memories of James was when he was seven years old and we were fishing at a trout pond in Colorado. On our way to the pond, we stopped at the store for some bait. James carefully chose the bait he wanted to use and as he placed it on the counter, the man behind the cash register said, “This won’t work!” Undeterred, James told him he wanted it anyway.
As we walked out to the pond, James went over to an area where no one else was fishing, and within minutes he caught nine trout! You could see groups of men around the pond begin to move over to where James was fishing. Many of them asked what bait he was using and went back into the store to buy the same kind. One man even asked James for fishing advice, and once James taught him how to cast his line, he started catching fish. Remember, James was just a little kid! But boy, was he a good fisherman!
Have you ever thought about why Jesus chose fishermen to be His disciples? The more obvious choices might have been gifted preachers or maybe even politicians with a lot of influence. But no, He chose rugged, outdoor-oriented men who knew how to go after something and catch it. Think of what this implies: He gave the work of the ministry to normal, everyday, working people.
He’s called us all to be fishers of men, but many of us have never caught any fish. It’s surprisingly simple to do. All you need is the right bait and to cast your line in the right location. If you’re wondering, What is the right bait?, I have some good news for you: you already have it. Bait is any story about God’s goodness. It could be your salvation experience or a story about how God changed your life. A friend of mine shared a story with me about his daughter whose eyesight was healed. He and his wife prayed for her for months, and one morning she woke up with perfect eyes! Do you know what he did next? He emailed this story of God’s goodness to all of his clients, and this led to people giving their lives to Jesus!
So, what’s your story about God’s goodness? Are you ready to share it with everyone around you? Don’t be afraid. Just put some bait on your hook and cast it, then you’ll start catching some fish.