You’ve been Setup for a Come-up!
“And it came to pass, that, as the people pressed upon him to hear the word of God, he stood by the lake of Gennesaret, And saw two ships standing by the lake: but the fishermen were gone out of them, and were washing their nets. And he entered into one of the ships, which was Simon’s, and prayed him that he would thrust out a little from the land. And he sat down, and taught the people out of the ship. Now when he had left speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught. And Simon answering said unto him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net. And when they had this done, they inclosed a great multitude of fishes: and their net brake. And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled both the ships, so that they began to sink. When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord. For he was astonished, and all that were with him, at the draught of the fishes which they had taken: And so was also James, and John, the sons of Zebedee, which were partners with Simon. And Jesus said unto Simon, Fear not; from henceforth thou shalt catch men. And when they had brought their ships to land, they forsook all, and followed him.”
– Luke 5:1-11
What do you do when you get all that you have been praying to God for, only for Him to tell you to release it, give it up, or let it go? That’s the question that most of us want to pretend as if we don’t believe God would require of us. We want to surround ourselves with thoughts that God gives us the desires of our heart or what we want without requiring anything from us. Then, we even go as far as believing the only requirement there is to obtain anything from God is to believe in Jesus and that he was sent to save us by laying down his life for ours. However, if you take a closer look at the Bible and it’s readings, your will notice that most of the time whenever there was a great reward or a great harvest given to someone it required them to leave, let go, or give up their comfortability and or substance. I know some of y’all don’t believe me, but by the end of this “short” article, it is both my goal and belief that you will have a renewed understanding of two concepts; the proper way to view your material blessings and the proper way to view your trial by fire.
What greater example is their to help prove this point than the one we see in our text for this week? Peter and his associates had just finished a long and seemingly pointless fishing trip to no avail. After they arrive back on shore, here comes Jesus with a requirement of them. Jesus comes to Peter’s boat, steps in it, and tells him to push back so that he can teach the people. Peter didn’t ask him to do it, and I would even venture to say that he had no intention on listening to what Jesus was getting ready to teach. Nevertheless, Peter did as Jesus instructed. Then, once Jesus had finished his sermon he told Peter to go out into the deep and let down his nets in order to catch a mighty big load of fish. Again, Peter didn’t ask him for his help in this situation, and I imagine that he was tired and ready to call it a night. Nevertheless, Peter did as Jesus instructed. Can I give you the first shout cue? Sometimes, God doesn’t need your permission to step into your trying situation. Sometimes, because of the calling that He has placed in and over your life, He grants Himself permission to intervene on your behalf. Watch this. Once He steps in, it is your obedience to His intervention that causes the resources to flow in your direction, thereby resulting in the breakthrough concerning your situation. You Missed It!
Peter had not spoken to Jesus concerning anything that he needed. However, the Bible says that Jesus saw two boats whose fishermen had gone to wash their nets. Yet, he chose Peter’s boat as his platform. Why? Although Peter had not spoken to him concerning the situation at hand, Jesus knew that it was time to implement the Master’s Plan! (Somebody missed that little nugget and others got it.). So, Jesus steps into Peter’s boat, because he knew that what he was getting ready to teach needed to be heard by Peter, practiced by Peter, and witnessed to others by Peter. What was the message? Obedience to God is far greater than sacrifice; however, if you sacrifice as a result of your obedience to God then your reward shall be plenty, exceedingly, abundantly, and above all that you could have ever asked or dreamed of. In other words, make sure that whatever you are sacrificing is not at the expense of your obedience to God! Oh that’s shouting stuff right there. Somebody said, Brother Kean that sounded real good but I’m a little confused. Simply put, it is better to do what God said than to not do what He said and attempt to offer Him an offering.
Now, I know by now you are expecting me to give you many different examples from the Bible (and believe me there are many). This week I only have one example of this for you, Me! My wife and I had worked long and hard to build a comfortable life for ourselves. We had two children at the time. Well, just as things were on the verge of looking up and everything was going the way we wanted it, God came and said for me to quit my job. Anybody that knows me know that was a hard pill to swallow. Why? I was the sole provider for my family, and we had bill-bills. I’m talking grown up bills. Bills that says you have to work in order to keep it flowing. We had a mortgage, three car notes, utilities, medical insurance, and my children extra curricular activities. I said, “Lord it sounds like I hear you telling me to quit, but on the other hand the way these bills are setup Lord!” Long story short, I quit my job. Almost five months later, he came and said, “Now, it’s time to sell your house.” This was another hard pill to swallow. Why? This house was a house that my wife and I had designed ourselves. We picked out everything in the house from the layout to the arrangement of plugs to the grass in the yard. This was my wife’s baby, and I said “Lord if this is you telling me this, then you going to have to speak to my wife.” In the end we sold the house.
Are you still with me? I’m not telling you all this information as a means of getting you to give away or sell off all your things, I’m simply trying to show you how my “setback” was the greatest position to give me a comeback. Keep tracking with me just a moment longer. Finally, He said, “I need you to let go of this car.” This car was the one we needed y’all. It was the SUV. Why did you need the SUV? Oh, I forgot to mention that my wife had just found out she was pregnant, so now we have two children with one on the way. Needless to say, I was hesitant and I even was disobedient. I didn’t give the car up. So, they can and got it and another one. Then, God spoke and said, “Because of your disobedience, you have to give the last one up as well.” So we went from having three cars to no cars (soon back to one car). I looked at my not giving the SUV up as a sacrifice because I said I was going to stretch myself and pay that note instead of the little car that was more affordable. Again, needless to say I was wrong. So, now we have no house, one car, no extra curricular activities, no job, but I still had a small source of income coming in. What happened to us? Oh, you better believe people were laughing, looking down on us, talking about us, making fun of us, and even telling my wife she made a horrible mistake by marrying me and allowing me to lead. It was an experience that neither one of us will ever forget, but we didn’t let that get us done.
We kept on the path that God has laid out for us. My wife’s confidence in me and my relation with God causes her to desire one for herself and she works daily to strengthen it, my children are taken care of. Oh yeah, did I mention that my wife found out she was pregnant with a boy. This is significant because her family is full of nothing but girls and she wanted a boy since our first time of conception. Let me paint the picture real quick: Her side of the family consists of 14 people (11 of which are female). The only males are her grandfather, her first cousin (numerical not bloodline), and now my son. This is also significant because my wife got bold this time and made a vow with God and our son was God honoring that vow. Not only did He honor it, but He blessed that thing so to the point where we didn’t have to buy any diapers or wipes for the entire first year of his life and then some. People were still talking, but we just kept on walking. What happened? We ended up with a brand new car (no money down might I add), brand new apartment (after living with people for an entire year), a strong Christ-Centered marriage and family life, and I became an Independent Contractor with Amazon (after having applied over a year ago). Not to mention the ministry that was birthed out of this entire situation. Their still laughing, and we’re still walking.
What am I saying to you? When you have a word and a promise from the Lord, making that first step is usually the hardest one that you will ever face. Why? Nine times out of ten, it doesn’t come at the most convenient and comfortable time for you. It almost always causes interrupts your plans or arrangement with familiarity, and it doesn’t come with any specific instructions. However, it is that step that activates everything that is to follows. However, you have got to be willing to do what I like to call the “catch and release method.” What’s that Kean? There are some things that will come at you that seem very good for you and to you, but it’s not necessarily for you. So, although you caught it you have to distinguish whether it’s for you or not. If it’s not, release it, because it is delaying God from giving you the promises that he has ordained and predestined for you. Peter caught the load of fish, but it wasn’t for him. It was for his partners that he was getting ready to abandon to follow Jesus. Thus, he had to release it.
Can I go higher! Reach brother. I think I will. The little boy with the two fish and five loaves of bread caught the dinner, but it wasn’t for him. It was for Jesus to use to feed the mass of people. Thus, he had to release it. Shout There’s Power and Provision in the release. The lady with the Alabaster Box caught the spice within it, but it wasn’t for her. It was for the master, Jesus, who was about to be slain for our sakes. Thus, she had to release it. The man who provided the tomb for Jesus to be buried in caught the tomb, but it wasn’t for him. It was for the Lamb if God who has just given up his life for us. Thus, he had to release it. Release It! Release It! Release That Thing!
Are you experiencing a point in your life where it seems as if the instructions from God are causing you to move backwards instead of forward? Do you believe what you have got is your biggest catch yet, and you are scared to release it? If so, I Dare You to RELEASE that thing. Release it so that God can show you that you have not been denied, but You’ve been Setup for a Come back! In Jesus Name! Be blessed and stay encouraged!