Summary: This is a monologue portraying Simon Peter and his decision to "drop everything" and follow Jesus.
What would cause you to drop everything and do something completely different? While in seminary there were several times where when I was studying my friends would try to pull me away from those studies to do far more important things, or so they said. These things included going to IHOP at ungodly hours of the night, and watching serious films to advance our theological education, films like Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings. Okay, so it doesn’t take much to pull you from your collegiate studies. But what about your livelihood? What would it take for you to leave your job and to follow someone around the country, not knowing for sure where your next meal would come from? I think most of us would have to think long and hard about that one. This morning I want you to think about what is holding you back from dropping everything and running toward Jesus.
Would you pray with me?
Introduction – My name is Simon, and some call me Peter. I have a brother, Andrew. We fish a lot. In fact, its what we do for a living. Our family owned a fishing company. It was called The Rock Fishing Company. Its came from a nickname I had along with the land around Galilee. People always said I was the stable one, the rock. I was the one that everybody trusted. This was all before Christ gave me the name Peter. Our fishing company did pretty well. Oh, we had rough days, when we couldn’t catch a thing, but then we just through our nets on the other side of the boat. Oddly enough that would work sometimes. Most often that was after Jesus came around though.
Have you heard of Jesus? He was quite a legend in our area. It started with the stories surrounding his birth. Supposedly his mother was a virgin. Most of the towns around didn’t believe that story at all. We just thought Joseph was crazy for going through with the marriage. They say the night he was born all sorts of people came to see him. Of course that was in Bethlehem. Not too much happens down there. Then there were those kings that came to see him. Evidently they brought some pretty expensive gifts. It was enough to fund their trip to Egypt. They spent a few years there before coming back. It’s a good thing too. It just so happened that while they were in Egypt all the children about the same age as Jesus were killed. It was awful. It was all over the Jerusalem Post. You see the Roman authority had heard that Jesus was royalty of some kind and they couldn’t stand anyone challenging their authority. So they went on a rampage. I don’t know what we are going to do about these Romans, but we can’t continue to live under fear of death for every little action. Now, don’t get me wrong. There have been some pretty amazing improvements to the region. We now have paved roads, and those who don’t have fresh water, don’t have to go too far to find aqueduct with fresh running water. It is quite a price to pay for those conveniences. We were all praying for the Messiah to finally come. We knew that God had prophesied a Messiah for times like this, but where was he? When would he come and save us from this terrible situation? When would he come to restore the glory of Israel? We didn’t know, so we had to wait.
This is where I was when Jesus entered into my life. I was waiting. I wasn’t necessarily waiting on the Messiah, but I was waiting for some fish. Andrew was with me. We had been talking about everything. It can be a very long day; sometimes the conversations can go all different directions. We were in the middle of talking about Andrews’s prospects in marriage when we heard someone calling to us from the shore. We couldn’t hear him very well and the fish weren’t cooperating that day, so we pulled our net up and went in closer. It was Jesus. He asked us if we would follow him. Then he told us that if we did he would make us fishers of men. We weren’t completely unfamiliar with Jesus. We had been interested in him ever since John baptized him.
I don’t know how to describe the event to you. You won’t believe what we did next. We followed him. We just dropped our nets and left them there. There was something about him; there was something about the way he looked at me. It was almost as if he knew everything about me. He knew the good and the bad. I just felt like if I followed him I would find something I had been looking for my whole life. Andrew felt the same way. What were we going to tell our father? He had worked so hard to get this fishing business up and running and now, I, Peter, the rock, was going to crush him with this news. I just didn’t know how to break it to him. What was I going to tell my wife? What was I going to tell my children? We had our own house, but that was paid off, and I knew that if I could sell my father on it, that he would take care of my wife and children in my absence. I had to follow Jesus. I knew that if I didn’t I would be missing out on what I was meant to do with my life. All this sounded like teenage rubbish. This would have been expected from my brother, but not from me. My father would tell me that I was a disappointment to him and that I was throwing my life away. My wife would probably start crying and not be able to understand why I wanted to leave her. It didn’t matter though.