“Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Mt 4:19
Notice in this passage what Jesus requires of us and then what he promises to do in return. We are not to make ourselves into fishers of men, but rather, we are to follow Him and let him do the making.
The more I grow the more I see this truth and the importance of this truth. Look back through the pages of the bible. Do you see God choosing the ambitious? Is he choosing those that are forging ahead, trying to become something great? Look at Moses, for example. He was one that initially was this way, but it didn’t get him closer to what God had for him. No, instead it got him in trouble. It wasn’t until he was out in the desert tending sheep, humbled, that God appear to him and fulfilled his calling.
Think also, about David, Joshua, Jeremiah, Isaiah, and the list goes on.
David is a really good example. Here was a guy who, I’m sure, never thought that he would be a king. He wasn’t trying to become a king. He was simply doing what his hand found to do and he did it as unto the Lord. He sought the Lord in the open field and worshipped with his harp. He was simply ‘following’ the Lord. He didn’t care about being a king. But God called him, and now he is viewed as the greatest king in the bible.
There are so many people nowadays with so much selfish ambition to become something and to be someone. They think that satisfaction comes from achievement and position; but it doesn’t. It comes from quality relationships with God and people.
And besides that, when it comes to fulfilling your calling in Christ, it doesn’t work the way the world works. The world seeks fame and position for pride’s sake. But any position that you may be called to in the church is for other peoples sake. If you have some great desire to be a preacher for any other reason than for the betterment of the people and for the glory of God, then you have no place as a preacher. If you are doing it for money or for notoriety or to be greeted in the marketplace with, “Hello, Reverend!,” then you are profaning the name of God and setting yourself up for strict judgment:
My brothers, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment. James 3:1
But even some with honest hearts are going about fulfilling the plan of God for their lives in the wrong way. They are trying to make it happen, rather than letting God make them. Jesus said, “I will MAKE you fishers of men.” He didn’t even say, “I’ll teach you how to become fishers of men.” No, when you follow Him and seek him He begins to transform you into what He desires for you to become. It involves teaching, but it also involves so much more. It involves God’s ability working through you and with you.
When David fought Goliath, he had that ability with him. God had anointed him (which was symbolic of the Holy Spirit coming upon him). This anointing is the ability and grace of God to do and be what God has called you to be. In this case, God had called David to be a warring king. When David hurled the stone and struck Goliath, it wasn’t just that God had taught him to be a good with the sling. No, but when the stone came out of the sling it was guided supernaturally to hit the small space in the giant’s head. The velocity increased by an unseen force, and the stone sank into the target by an invisible power! God was with him!
Even so, when we are walking in the calling of God, we will be accompanied by God’s grace and power in the same way. The key and point of this message is that getting there is not by ambition, but by following Jesus. It’s by serving him in times of prayer and study. It’s by abiding in the vine, as He said.
“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.” Jn 15:5
Don’t be ambitious for a position, but instead be ambitious for a relationship with the most high God. Make it your aim and your goal to be as close to God as you possibly can. You will then begin to see Him MAKE you into the person that He has called you to be!