Obedience: Simple, But Not Easy

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[Jesus] said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because You say so, I will let down the nets.” — Luke 5:4–5

There’s no reason to think that Simon Peter’s response to Jesus was sarcastic, but you have to wonder if he was thinking, Yeah, right. That carpenter-rabbi thinks He can tell a fisherman how to fish? But what did he have to lose at this point? So as he squinted in the sunlight glinting off the Sea of Galilee, he flung his soaked net overboard one more time.

I’m not sure where those fish had been hiding all night, but this time they swarmed into his net as soon as it hit the water. Simon Peter had never had such a wasted night, and now he had never hauled in a catch like this, in broad daylight. What Jesus suggested wasn’t difficult or complicated; it just didn’t make any sense. Practically speaking, it seemed like a waste of time. It went against Peter’s extensive experience and intuition. Jesus gave no fresh explanation. His directions weren’t innovative or creative. Yet Simon Peter simply obeyed.

Sometimes following Jesus is simple, but that doesn’t mean it’s always easy.

Humble obedience to what God has called us to may be as simple as making a phone call, extending an invitation, or walking across the street. Maybe it carries a greater challenge, like extending forgiveness to someone who has hurt you, or moving to a foreign mission field, or trusting Him by tithing. But when God asks us to do something that seems impractical or inconvenient — maybe especially when it does — it brings abundant reward.

Notice that God will let you voice your objections. So, if that makes you feel better, He’s okay with it.

Just remember that the One telling you where to fish is the one who created the fish.

Following Today

Take a few minutes to read the rest of this story from Luke 5. Prayerfully consider something simple, but not necessarily easy, that Jesus is asking of you today as you follow Him. Complete this sentence: “Lord, because You say so, I will…”

Excerpted with permission from Not a Fan Devotional by Kyle Idleman, copyright Kyle Idleman.

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Your Turn

How often do we miss the outrageous blessings of God and the miracles He wants to perform because we think we know better than to follow a simple but not easy Jesus is asking us to do? Come share with us on our blog about a time you obeyed God even when your answer may have been “Lord, because You say so, I will…” and what happened! We want to hear from you! ~ Devotionals Daily



Kyle Idleman

Kyle Idleman is the Teaching Pastor at Southeast Christian Church in Louisville, Kentucky, the fourth largest church in America. He is the author of the award-winning and best-selling book not a fan. He is also the presenter of several video curricula, including not a fan, H2O, and the newly-released study gods at war.

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