The next day Jesus decided to leave for Galilee. Finding Philip, he said to him, “Follow me.” John 1:43 NIV
Benji was a shelter dog who I had only known for two hours. He had been in the shelter a short time and was given the name Benji. During his walk, he laid down hoping to receive a belly rub. He was not disappointed. I approached, calling his name and he immediately rolled over, jumped up and came running. Benji responded to a name he had not known long with excitement as someone wanted him and was calling his name.
John tells the story of Jesus starting his ministry by calling his disciples to follow him. John the Baptist had recommended Jesus to some of his own followers and when Jesus passed by they followed him. They got to know Jesus and told a few others who showed some interest and then they introduced them to Jesus, too. Nathaniel was a bit skeptical but Jesus quickly won him over with insight into his personality. Like Benji, Simon had his name changed. Jesus told Simon that he would now be called Peter. Each disciple had a unique personality, each had a meeting with Jesus and each had their own response.
In Ephesians 4:1, Paul says, “Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called.” We are all called by Jesus to follow him. The pages of the bible are full of verses inviting us to love and serve God. Hymns have been written telling us that Jesus is calling. All require a response on our part.
The words to the call are different depending on our personalities. He knows us in our hour of darkest need and calls us as our comforter. He calls us out of our self-sufficiency and offers to be our provider. Jesus calls us in our times of anxiety and stress and offers us his peace. He is our all in all and he is constantly calling us to follow him.
Has he called you by name? Do you hear that still small voice whispering, “Follow me.”? Is there a shout you can barely hear over the noise and commotion of your busy life asking you to draw close to Jesus? Maybe, he wants to walk with you in an already successful marriage and career. Whatever your circumstances, Jesus is calling. How will you respond?