Hear. Drop. Follow.
Jesus Calls the First Disciples
While walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon (who is called Peter) and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen.
And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
Immediately they left their nets and followed him.
And going on from there he saw two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee and John his brother, in the boat with Zebedee their father, mending their nets, and he called them.
Immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.
Hear the Call
My name is Ned Arick, I'm the Worship Leader at Imagine Church in Tampa Bay, FL. I'm married to the woman of my dreams, have a baby girl on the way and am an active Real Estate Investor.
If you had have told me in 2014 this is where I'd be, going into 2020, I'd have literally laughed at you. To be honest, I'd have thought you were genuinely crazy.
You see, in 2014, I didn't even believe in God. I graduated college with an exercise science degree, went and got my masters degree and that's when life started changing.
After graduating college I left fitness, got a job in healthcare and one lonely day in my apartment in Sarasota, FL I decided to go to the Young Adult church service at Bayside Community Church. That's when my story truly begins.
In just 6 months, I got radically saved, felt the call of ministry on my life and changed my path completely.... well... not really.
The first two parts are true, I got saved, felt a deep call of ministry on my life...but... I ran as far from that call as I could.
For the past 5 years I've been chasing money, fame and recognition. Not God.
So how'd I get here?
I'll spare you the details, but the Lord brought my wife and I back to Tampa and drastically changed our heart, our path and our vision.
In May I left what I thought would be my forever career, followed the leading of the Lord and accepted the Worship Leader position at Imagine Church, made a huge career change, that failed in the eyes of the natural, but was just what I needed from God, found out my wife was pregnant and over the past 5 months have been simply following the call of God on our life.
Last month I left that job and started with a local real estate investment team, again by the leading of the Lord, and here we are.
When the Lord gave me Matthew 4:18-22, He spoke three keys to me that have turned into The Imagine Movement.
The first being: Hear the Call of God.
This is obviously the first thing that needs to happen. You've got to hear God's voice in your life. You've got to hear his leading.
The question then becomes how?
So if we look at these verses, it truly shows that the call of God doesn't just come when you're on your face in your prayer closet.
Simon (Peter) and Andrew were going about their daily activities. Doing their job and the Lord placed himself in their story and it changed their path permanently.
What I will say is this. To hear the call of God, you've got to be in ear shot. You've got to be tuned to the frequency and desiring to hear from the Lord.
Jesus walked up to the shore where they were working. What shore is Jesus standing on calling out to you?
When the Lord spoke to my spirit to start this movement I was walking back from the gym. I was praying in the spirit and was tuned into a word from the Lord, and he called out to me and told me what to do.
The Lord is on your shore calling you to a specific life. Tune in.
Once you're tuned into the voice of God and his call on your life, this next part is where it gets tough.
I didn't do this for 5 years.
Those five years put me into debt (Keeping up with the Jones's), created a lot of heart ache, doubt, anxiety and a focus only on money.
When the Lord calls you to something, the next thing you've got to do is drop everything.
You'll notice that when Jesus calls out to Simon (Peter) and Andrew, there's no discussion, there's no doubt, it's just and immediate decision to follow.
The Lord simply asks that when he places a call on your life, that you drop everything holding you back from that call.
It could be people in your life, places you go, things you hold onto, addictions. But when the Lord places a call on your life, you need to Immediately leave your nets and follow him.
When you look at the next few verses, James and John didn't just leave their nets, they left their father.
Again, no questions, no doubt. It doesn't even say that their father said anything. Everyone knew that this call was special. It was one that would change their lives and the world.
So I ask you, what are you holding onto that is keeping you from the call of God on your life? What is holding you back from changing your life and the lives of others?
The last step is simple.
Notice I said simple, not easy.
I'll let you know one thing, when Jesus calls you, it's on his time, and it's most likely not what you had planned for your life.
But what is amazing about when he does show up on your shoreline, is that he will call you to do something that will change your life and change the world.
John 8:12 says: Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
God will never call you to something to only have you walk alone. When you hear the call, drop everything and follow him, he'll be a light to your path, a lamp unto your feet and you will prosper in all you do.
Hear. Drop. Follow.
So this movement of God is simple.
We are staying obedient to the what the Lord has asked us to do.
Right now it's to create the atmosphere where the Holy Spirit can move in Tampa Bay. To share the Love of Jesus with our community. We are here to feed the hungry, give to the poor, love the unloved, and share the Gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ with this city.
Who knows what the Lord will call us to next, where he'll call us or who he'll call us to serve.
This movement is simply a movement of obedience. We have heard the call, we have dropped everything and we are following Him.
We're so pumped to share this journey of faith with you every week.
Until Next Time!
© 2019 Ned Arick