We told Ricky what we wanted for breakfast. As he started to leave the table to tell Cook, Stan said, “How about a re-fill on the coffee?”
“Sure, Stan,” Ricky replied, “but you know I can’t be in two places at once. Which do you want? Do you want me to pour you another cup of coffee or do you want me to go tell Cook what you want for breakfast?”
“Please tell Cook first,” Stan said, “and then come back with some more coffee.”
“You got it,” Ricky replied.
As Ricky rushed away, Stan asked me, “Did you hear the spiritual significance of what Ricky just said?”
“Spiritual significance? What spiritual significance?”
“That he can’t be in two places at once,” Stan replied. “I saw the same thing earlier this morning about Jesus and a couple of fishermen who would later become apostles.”
“What same thing?”
“Let’s take a look at what was going on,” Stan replied. “Quick summary. One day Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee. He saw two fishermen sitting in their boat mending their nets. He called to them and they left what they were doing to follow Him.”
“The two fishermen were James and John,” Stan said. “They couldn’t have stayed in the boat mending their nets and leave the boat to follow Jesus. They couldn’t do both at the same time. They couldn’t be in two places at once. And it’s the same thing for us today.”
“We can’t stay where we are if Jesus has for us to be somewhere else.”
“Oh,” I said, “it’s like we have to make a choice. James and John could have chosen to stay in the boat mending their nets rather than going with Jesus.”
“That’s it,” Stan replied. “James and John went on to be disciples and then apostles rather than staying as fishermen sitting in their boat. Are we just sitting and mending our nets when God has something else for us to be and to be doing?”
Bible verses to consider:
And going on a little farther, He saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who were also in the boat mending the nets. And immediately He called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired servants, and went away to follow Him. Mark 1:19-20.
And going on from there He saw two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in the boat with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and He called them. And they immediately left the boat and their father, and followed Him. Matthew 4:21-22.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, that you gave your only begotten Son so that I could move from where I was — separated from you — to where you want me to be — in your eternal presence. Thank you, too, that you have a role for me to play in building your kingdom. I confess that too often I am reluctant to move from where I am, doing what I am doing, to be where you want me to be, doing what you have for me to do. Please forgive the foolishness of wanting to stay in my boat mending my nets when you have something else for me. Please help me to follow every step of your lead so I am, in fact, where you have for me to be, doing what you have for me to do for you and your kingdom. Thank you that I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Think on this: Have you moved from being separated from God to being in His eternal presence beginning on this side of eternity? If no, why have you not accepted His free and gracious provision? Why do you want to remain separated from God? If you are a Christian with the assurance of salvation and redemption, how are you doing with being and doing what God has for you? Are you reluctant to “get out of your boat” and stop “mending your nets” when God has something else for you to be and to do? If you sense the need for change, how is that going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?
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