I can still vividly remember the back of my coach’s head. Coach Mattern was a fierce man, a great runner, and an intense competitor. And he ran with his team every single practice.
He grew up the younger of two brothers and fought his way tooth and nail to succeed, to win, and to always overcome the challenge of being the smaller of the two. That same toughness translated to his career as a runner and beyond to his stint as a coach.
He always ran with the Varsity Pack, never compromising on the pace that he aspired to for each of his runners. That same unrelenting drive to win the race translated to the runners that kept closest pace with Mattern every single step.
We caught the fire from the coach. It was something that couldn’t be taught. It was something that could only be gotten by close proximity.
The same relates to our relationship with Jesus. If we follow him, keep pace with him, and continue life with him – we are “made fishers of people,” (Matt. 4:19). We don’t have to be concerned with memorizing a list of to-dos but rather a consistent closeness that allows us to “catch” the character of our rabbi.
We can learn a little about what this process looks like when we study the way Jesus challenged the disciples. He called Peter out from what was familiar as a fisherman – and even called him out from the boat itself – to do the seemingly impossible (Matt. 14:29-30)!
And while Jesus takes us along some of the most challenging landscapes throughout life – we can also be confident that the pace that he sets for us is one that is “easy and light” (Matt. 11:28-30). We do not follow an unreasonable rabbi. Rather, he has “given us everything we need for a godly life” (2 Peter 1:3).
It was in the process of following Jesus that Peter was turned from the lowly fisherman from Galilee into the rock upon which Jesus’s church was built.
What could walking with Jesus do to you? Come and see!
Pastor Ryan Lunde
Young Adult Ministries