Fisherman-cast-small

Mark 1:17 says, “And Jesus said to them, ‘Follow me, and I will make you become fishers of men’” (ESV).

Throughout my ministry, God has placed so many different people in my path—people from all different walks of life, from the affluent to the poor, from the important to not important, from the religious to the nonreligious. But a common theme between them all, when confronted with the gospel, is that they will listen if it is presented in a nonthreatening way.

In the book of Mark, Jesus told the apostles that He would make them fishers of men. Now, let me show you how a fisherman works.

The fishermen have their boats and their nets. The go out to the sea, and they cast their nets in the water. After a while, they pull in the nets, and in most cases there is their catch, fish galore. Sometimes they cast their nets and pull in little to nothing. But they do it in a way that when they throw their nets, they don’t scare off the fish.

When Jesus told the apostles to follow Him, He didn’t say, “Grab your 12-gauge shotgun, and let’s go hunting. We’ll go out and find our prey, take aim, shoot’ em and then drag them back to the house.”

Unfortunately, this is how many Christians try to share the news of Christ. They go out and start taking aim at all those who are in “sin.” They tell them they are going to hell if they don’t change their ways. Albeit true, it’s in the delivery that we lose the attention of the lost.

Much like the fishermen who use nets, our proverbial net is the Word of God. We should throw our “net” out so as not to scare the lost. Throw it out in a way that entices them to come around the net. Then, when it is time, we pull the net in slowly.

By sharing the gospel in a way that is nonthreatening, you will have the attention of that person you are witnessing to longer than you will if you go at them with gun barrels blazing. Build a relationship; then you will have their trust.

Don’t scare off the fish. It makes fishing harder for the rest of us. In reading the Gospels, you can see Jesus as the example of the best fisherman around.

Jody Burkeen is founder of Man Up God’s Way Ministries, birthed out of his desire to help change the way Christian men “do” Christianity.

Leaders are readers! Subscribe now and get 3 magazines for the price of 1. Get Ministry Today, Charisma and SpiritLed Woman all for $24. YES - I'm a leader!

Ministry Today Subscription Special - Subscribe to Ministry Today magazine today and get 12 issues (2 full years) plus Amplified Leadership, a free leadership book for only $24.

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
  • Discouragement can be a serious struggle.

    Guard Your Spirit Against These 4 Crippling Attacks

    Are you struggling this Valentine's Day with one of these discouraging issues?

  • Some of the toughest lessons reap the greatest rewards.

    10 Tough Lessons Every Pastor Should Remember in Ground-Shaking Trials

    One is that your suffering may turn out to be the highest compliment the Father ever gave you.

  • Why Many Christians Misunderstand This Crucial Leadership Trait

    Great leadership doesn't start with a great education, although that is incredibly valuable. ...

  • Worship leaders, keep your team's attitude in check.

    This Can Quickly Erode a Worship Team's Culture

    God has given us talent and He calls for excellence, but excellence with this is not honoring ...

  • Start a Wildfire of Spiritual Growth in Your Church

    Start a Wildfire of Spiritual Growth in Your Church

    Watch how God can take one spark and turn it into a wildfire that impacts your ministry, your community and even future generations.

  • Your Source of Unlimited Kingdom Energy and Power

    Jesus said that we can do greater works than He did and that He will do whatever we ask in His Name.

  • What reasons can you think of that leaders might not choose to delegate authority?

    7 Reasons Some Leaders Dump Delegation

    These could have a lot to do with stalled growth and low team morale.

  • These seven responses can get you on the right track.

    Responding Like Jesus When Your Church Kicks You Out

    It's a pain that many in the ministry have felt at least once and maybe more.

  • A 'What's in it for me?' mentality could bring your church down.

    The Mentality That May Be Killing Your Church

    And we wonder why so many congregations are stagnated, plateaued or declining.

Use Desktop Layout
Ministry Today Magazine — Serving and empowering church leaders