Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

How Do We Feel About Jesus?

Matthew 4:20

At once they left their nets and followed him.

Growing up I had people I looked up to for sure. I looked up to my father – as a man I wanted to be like when I grew up. I looked up to athletes like Boog Powell – Frank & Brooks Robinson – Wes Unseld – Earl “The Pearl” Monroe – and more. As I grew older there were others I looked up and respected as well. I felt like I wanted to be like these persons – I wanted to be a great dad – I wanted to be an athlete.

If you were to ask me whom I would leave everything to follow – I’m not sure I would have followed any of these – except maybe my father. Of course the Sunday School answer would be Jesus – I would follow Him to the ends of the earth. But would I? Would we? We’d like to think we would – but from time-to-time we fail to do so – don’t we? How do we really feel about Jesus?

Here’s today’s passage in partial context. Matthew 4:18–22 – 18 As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. 19 “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” 20 At once they left their nets and followed him. 21 Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them, 22 and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.

The first disciples called left everything – immediately. They left family – friends – jobs – and lifestyle – to follow Jesus. The rest of their lives they followed Jesus – even unto their death. Many of them were martyred for their faith. At times – we have a hard time attending worship on a regular basis. At times we have a hard time simply tithing (giving 10% of our income) to the Lord’s work. At times we have a hard time telling others about Jesus. At times we fail to follow Jesus. How do we really feel about Jesus?

I remember playing basketball at our home in Seat Pleasant (the parsonage at Seat Pleasant UMC – now Gethsemane UMC). We had a hoop on the house over the garage door. There was a light that shined over the area and I can remember spending hours playing by myself – shooting – running plays in my head. I remember – at first – being Earl Monroe – make moves around Walt Frazier or others. At some point – I began to be me – with Earl or Wes passing me the ball before I shot to win the game. I spent hours shooting and chasing the ball when it got away. Late into the night I would spend hours playing ball.

How much time are we willing to spend serving Jesus? How much do we think about serving Jesus? Do we imagine ourselves in service of Jesus? Do we dream of ways to promote the Gospel of Jesus Christ? Are we willing – even deep into the night – to follow Jesus?

We have idols in our life. We have those we look up to. We have folks we wish we could emulate. How do we feel about Jesus?

Just something for us to think about today as we go on our way.


May 8, 2018 - Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Denomination, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Missions, Outreach, Personal, Theology, Worship | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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