Saturday, May 3, 2014

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Invitation to Christ' hospitality
“I am going out to fish,’ Simon Peter told them, and they said, “We’ll go with you.’ – John 21:3b
 There is a beautiful statue of Jesus in Germany that had its hands destroyed in the bombings of World War II.  Instead of replacing his hands, the local people put a sign nearby that read, “I have no hands but yours.”  Someone writing about the relationship between Jesus and his followers wrote, “You are the feet with which he walks to do good, You are the hands, with which he blesses the world.”  These are just another other way of expressing what is written in 2 Corinthians 5:20,” We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us…”  Ambassadors represent their government, usually for a particular assignment or mission.  We are Christ’s ambassadors here on earth.  We are to represent Him, we are to be His hands and feet, working for Him to accomplish the mission that he has entrusted to us.
Many people believe that when Peter said “I am going out to fish,” he meant that he was returning to his former life and former occupation.  His decision influenced his colleagues who said, “We will go with you.”  We should always remember that we have a great deal of influence on the people around us.  We can either bring them closer to God or take them further away from God.  Despite the risen Christ’s appearances, they were quick to abandon the mission that Christ had given them.  But Christ would not abandon them.  He would not give up on them.
                The passage here is similar to an event that occurred about three years ago (as recorded in Luke 5:1-11.)  In that passage also, Simon and some other fishermen toiled all night and did not catch any fish.  But when Jesus came, they caught so many that their nets began to break.  Then Christ tells them, “Not to be afraid, but from now on you will be fishers of men.”  So in the passage from John 21, when a similar incident takes place, Jesus is reminding his disciples of their call.  They are called to be his disciples and participate in God’s redemption of the world.
 Too often like Peter and the other disciples we are tempted to return to our old way of life and abandon the mission of Jesus Christ.  But just as Christ would not give up on the disciples, he will not give up on us.  We are his ambassadors, we are to represent him and work for him in being fishers of people.  We are to help them, teach them, and show them the way of the suffering savior.
Prayer: Dear God, enable us to be faithful ambassador for us.   Enable us to be your hands and feet on this word. Enable us to participate in you mission and be fishers of people.  Amen.
Thought for the day:  “May the love of the Lord Jesus draw us to Himself. May the power of the Lord Jesus strengthen us in His service.  May the Joy of the Lord Jesus fill our souls.” (William Temple)

Rev. Shibi Abraham, Oklahoma MTC