Are You an 'At Once' Believer?


To develop an “at once” urgent kind of faith and obedience takes the God-given grace to say, “Yes,” when He calls.

“As Jesus walked beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. ‘Come, follow me,’ Jesus said, ‘and I will make you fishers of men.’ At once they left their nets and followed him.” (Mark 1:16-18, NIV)

I’m always struck by the sense of urgency that Simon Peter and Andrew showed in these verses. Notice, the words, “At once they left their nets and followed him.” It does not say that they got together and talked about it or went home and discussed it with their families. It says, “At once.” Another translation says “immediately.”

As a consultant and coach for many years, I’ve witnessed many people make sudden and dramatic changes in their life. We have a worldly expression for it. It’s usually referred to as “middle-aged crazy.” The expression applies to both men and women, who suddenly walk in and announce they want a divorce, are quitting their jobs, and starting a new life (usually with someone else)! Whenever this happens, we are struck by the abruptness and dramatic level of change in the person’s life.

Reading this passage, I can’t help but wonder if Simon Peter and Andrew’s wives and family understood what had happened to them. They must have asked, “Why? What is the rush?” I’m sure they struggled to explain to their wives’ satisfaction why “at once” they were leaving their business (boats and nets) and following Jesus. I greatly admire Simon Peter and Andrew’s sense of obedience and sold-out faith and trust in Jesus.

I must confess that often I hesitate, think about, want to pray first, and talk to Karen before I finally say, “Yes” to God. Recently, God showed me that He was calling me to a higher standard, to an “At once” kind of faith and obedience. He is giving me the grace to say, “Yes.” Child of God, is Jesus calling you to make a radical change in your life? If so, I encourage you to say, “Yes” and follow Him “at once.”

Lord, thank You for showing me the power of “At once” faith. Jesus, remove all doubt and fear and teach me to come to You “at once,” whenever You call. Through the blood of Jesus and in the name of Jesus I pray, amen.

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