Launch Out

There is a Latin phrase for the moment when high tide is at its peak and the moon begins to tug the current back out to sea… “ob portu.”  No matter the time of day, this was the perfect moment to set sail — for ships to launch out!

Jesus seized the opportune moment in Luke 5, as crowds converged on the shores covered with the crisis of empty nets.  In this short and powerful sermon, Christ issues a simple challenge: to launch out, which wasn’t a new thing. It was the same thing he had done over and over the night before — the same thing that didn’t work.  But here Christ asked him to do the same thing again & to trust Him for different results… WHY?

Insanity is doing the same thing over & over again and expecting different results.
Faith is doing it one more time… because God said so!

God chooses to use men to do the impossible

He is readily able to do the impossible – yet He seeks men to use.  We need to have faith & be willing. Just like Peter said: “at your word” — just a little bit of faith (seed) is needed to move mountains.  It continues to amaze me that God involves men – the most unlikely of men – to do the impossible.  Weak, feeble, simple… not even the strong, the wise, the royal, and the masses… Why?

Faith-born miracles always bring glory to God

Do you believe that God is God of all gods?  Do you believe that He is all powerful?  in control? that He loves you? Of course!  Me too!  but then I ask myself When’s the last time I acted like it!?!  If that’s true, why do I stress about things & sweat the small stuff?  It’s because I tend to believe God CAN – but then end up doubting that He WILL for me.  I wonder if God is as interested in the things that I’m interested in.  The truth is – He’s not!  But He IS interested in me – and you.  I must confess that I’m not at all into Hello Kitty and Hot Wheels, BUT then my little girls asks for a Hello Kitty backpack & Aaron wants a toy car, I am suddenly willing to fork out the cash because I DO care about them!!!!  Get it yet?  God loves to make you smile – more than you do your kids!  He does all this to draw us close to Him!

Jesus uses opportunities like these to call followers

I believe the Lord is leading us into the next phase of growth – not so that He/we can see growing facilities – but to see a growing number of followers.  I know we say “It’s not about the buildings” and “Buildings are a tool to reach people.”  But this is an incomplete  perspective… the buildings are a means for God to get what He wants too — NOT just us! God wants to change hearts – your heart, my heart, their hearts… and He uses building programs and capital campaigns to do it!

He doesn’t care about bricks and mortar, about steal and concrete.  He cares about souls, about hearts, about lives being changed.  When this story began, Simon was just Simon, a cussing sailor.  By the time it ended, he was a believer, a follower, a disciple.

We must never forget that the Gospel is the Main thing!  Jesus lived, died, & rose again to save sinners and that gospel changes hearts – mends relationships, builds churches, and works miracles!  They left their nets… forsook all … let go >>> and followed Him!  We can’t do both: pursue the world and love God.  The Bible is clear, no man can serve two masters.  Our Savior is not interested in a two-timing bride.

For some, it means… forsaking a nasty habit, releasing your grip on your dream – because it’s not God’s dream for you, ceasing to chase the elusive more, and choosing to be content.  For others, it means… stepping out by faith and starting a business, overcoming excuses and fear, selling all you have and moving to another country, going back to school, or moving your investments out of IRA’s into eternal investments

A great follow up Scripture to this is Mark 10:28-30. The rich, young lawyer had just walked away from Jesus’ offer, choosing his life over God’s.  Jesus’ offer still stands (by the way): exchange all you have for all He has.  Then Peter speaks up: We have forsaken all – what will we have???  Jesus said that nobody has ever been worse off by trusting God… no one.  Everyone who has ever given up anything for Christ will be rewarded “in this life” and in the next!  BOTH!

I’m not a prosperity gospel preacher… not the name-it and claim-it type… BUT – you’ll never go wrong trusting God.  He will never be outdone.  Never.  I wish I had space to tell you of all the times that God has blessed me.  My life hasn’t always been easy, and I’m not always faithful, but I can say that God IS faithful and always good.

We need to be aware that it’s high tide & I’m ready to set sail!  Let’s Go!

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