Every time I read The Bible, I learn something new, or get a new “takeaway” (as I would say in my teacher language). For someone like me who loves learning, I love the “aha” moments that come from reading The Bible. I also like the stinging moments that come when I feel convicted. I believe that both are necessary to get me where God desires for me to go.
I was reading the following passage from Mark 1:17-20 (NIV) and felt the sting of conviction:
““Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” At once they left their nets and followed him. When he had gone a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John in a boat, preparing their nets. Without delay he called them, and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men and followed him.”
This passage is where Jesus call his first disciples. And what really sticks out to me in this passage are two words: “at once”. Jesus calls out to Simon and Andrew (Mark 1:16 (NIV)), and they leave AT ONCE.
How awesome is their faith and obedience? Jesus calls for them, and they stop what they’re doing, and followed him. There is no delay. There is no “wait til I’m finished” or “I’m coming, right after I finish this”. They go immediately.
So many times the Lord has called me to do something, and I’ve hesitated. Instead of placing my faith in Him, and being fully obedient, I have chosen to casually follow the call, but not with the immediacy that the Lord requires (and expects). I wonder how many missed opportunities are out there because of my lack of faith and my hesitance. How many things have been delayed, not because of God, but because of me? How might I have better impacted lives for the Kingdom if I had moved “at once”?
My prayer is that the Lord would give me an “at once” spirit, that I may hear His calling, and have the faith and obedience to move right away. I’m believing the same for you, as well. I pray that we are never in a position where we feel that our agenda and our autonomy (free will) are more important than God’s authority in our lives.
Here’s to having an “at once” spirit, operating in total faith and obedience in 2014!
Be encouraged! Peace and Blessings!