Did Jesus tell these men, “Follow Me, and I will teach you how to improve yourselves”? Nope. He said, “Follow Me, and I will make you…”
Jesus is the One who makes us into what we were born to be. We don’t do that for ourselves. Yes, we do have a part to play. It’s quite simple. It’s encapsulated in His simple invitation: “Follow Me.” That’s it. He invites, we respond. He leads, we follow. He carries us, we nestle in. He empowers, we yield. He transforms us, we let Him.
Every morning when we wake up, Jesus reaches out for us. “Follow Me today,” He beckons. He reaches out His hand welcomingly for us to take. “I have a perfect plan for the hours ahead. Will you spend them leaning into Me?”
His presence is so inviting. Clearly, those fishermen that He summoned that day were captivated by it. There was something extraordinarily compelling about the way He spoke to them. They had never met Him before. But just one look from His eyes, just one word from His mouth – and they dropped their entire lives and went after Him.
He said, “I will make you…” They believed Him.
That day, they began to keep company with Him. After that, they never stopped. From that moment forward, they were in His presence. His presence transformed them. His presence made them into the vessels they were created to be. What was written about them in His book before the beginning of the world about them… unfolded beautifully as they simply stayed near Him. He made them into the men that He foresaw before time began.
Here is the “after” picture. After living in His presence for three and a half years, they were radically different men. Here is a portrait of their upgraded lives, from the perspective of those around them: “Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus” (Acts 4:13, NKJV).
They had become. Jesus had made them into the men they were meant to be all along. His presence had been the incubator that protected and fostered the development of their destiny. His intimate company had shaped these uneducated, untrained men into vessels that caused men to marvel and brought Him unending glory.
Do you, too, long for the fullness of the destiny that He has inscribed into your very DNA? Then take His outstretched hand today. Follow Him. Spend the day with Him, and every day after this. Lean into Him. Keep intimate company with Him. He will make you into the person you were born to be.
Can you imagine the moment of Jesus’ invitation to Simon, Andrew, James, and John? What was it that impelled them to respond so immediately?