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How should we use our life experience to serve the Lord?
That was the question that John Ketchersid asked in his sermon yesterday. Taking the passage in Luke 5, John explored the situation where Peter lets Jesus preach from his boat, then, because Jesus asks him to, puts his nes into the water even though he had been fishing all night without catching a single fish. He catches a ton of fish, then when Jesus asks him to leave it all and follow him, Peter does just that. He leaves all to follow the Savior.
So what does this teach us about serving the Lord? This is what John said:
- We serve the Lord by USING our experience, expertise, and resources. Peter was a fisherman and had a boat. He used what he had to help Jesus teach the people by letting Jesus use his boat. We all have things in our lives that we can use for God’s kingdom, whether it is our time, our money, or our experience. God’s kingdom is blessed when His people use whatever He has given them.
- Serving the Lord IN SPITE OF our experience, expertise, and resources. When Jesus asks Peter to put out his nets after they had fished all night with no success, you can just imagine Peter’s thoughts. Seriously? I have been fishing for years! I know how to fish and I can tell you right now, we are not going to catch any fish. It is late in the day and I’ve already cleaned my nets. And then “Master, because you asked, I will do it.” Sometimes we let our experience, our knowledge, and our abilities get in the way of the kingdom. We think we know best, when in fact we know nothing about what is best for the kingdom. It is when we follow Jesus in spite of what we know that life gets exciting and God’s kingdom is realized here on earth.
- Serving the Lord by LEAVING our experience, expertise, and resources. Jesus told Peter to follow him, and he would make Peter a fisher of men. What I thought interesting is that he added, “Don’t be afraid.” Leaving what you know and do and are good at is frightening! We like feeling secure in what we know. We want to feel in control of our life and do what we think is best. But Jesus says to not be afraid of leaving it and following Him. We can rest in His love for us as we take that leap of faith to follow Him with all that we are.