I have a question for you! Would you rather be following or fishing? For some of you, your answer will always be fishing! I am not a fisherman and this really does not apply to me. Yet the question becomes vital when we consider it in light of Matthew 4:19, “‘Come, follow me,’ Jesus said, ‘and I will send you out to fish for people.'” The way that I learned this verse as a child was, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
When Jesus said, “Come, follow me” His meaning was so much more than just, “let’s hang out and do life together.” He was not just advocating that the young men, who would become His disciples, would be affirmed, feel better about themselves, and give a year of their lives in humanitarian efforts to do their part to make the world a better place. His comment was so much more.
“Come” is a command. It is a life-transforming directive given by the Master to His subordinates. “Follow me” means “get behind me.” He is the Teacher, they are the students. He is the Master, they are the servants. He is the Leader who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. He provides direction, protection, and is the One who brings the Kingdom of God to earth. The role of the disciples is to listen, learn, and obey. They are to give the totality of their being to the Master as they get behind Him and follow Him.
When they obeyed, they received from Jesus value and purpose. They are to be fishers of people! As Jesus’ disciples, they positioned themselves to be in right relationship with God and also so that they can win the lost and make disciples. As disciples, we too are to shine the light of God’s love to everyone, everywhere so that all may know the love of God and be in relationship with Him. This puts into practice the command, “love God and love others” (Matthew 22:37).
It is with your partnership that Network211 can be “fishers of people!” The body of water in which we fish is the Internet. People worldwide are “swimming” in the water looking for answers to their life dilemmas. The “bait” that we use is that we can connect them with the Answer, Jesus Christ. When we “catch” one fish we rejoice (Luke 15:10). When our boat is overflowing with fish then we revel in the joy of an amazing day!
I praise the Lord that our “fishing” has brought results; Christ-honoring results. Lord willing, by the end of August we will reach the milestone of presenting the Gospel to 50 million individuals worldwide. This will be fourteen years since we launched Project 10Million that is now Project 100Million. Praise God!
As we set our strategy to complete Project 100Million, I believe the Lord will want us to accomplish this goal by 2028. That will be the 20th anniversary of the launch. Is it possible to reach 50 million individuals with the Good News in six years? “With man this is impossible, but with God, all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26).
Let’s continue being faithful fishers of people! However you want to say it, the harvest is plentiful, the fish are biting, and the light of day is shining brightly. Let’s continue to pray diligently. Let’s continue to give strategically and generously. Let’s continue to follow and fish for God’s glory!
Dr. Mark Flattery