The reason I fish for men…

I wanted to take a minute here in the onset of this blog journey to share one of the nuts and bolts stories that has shaped the man I am and the one I hope to become. This site is my venue for articulating my heart related to Faith Family and Food. You will find that they all tend to weave in and through each other. I think this story will lend insight into what drives me and sustains my passion for life in general. I intend to post most evenings so feel free to subscribe or pop in often as the content will evolve rapidly now that it’s got a bit of momentum behind it.

I’m in a phenomenal leadership development class right now and one of the excersises was to share “your story” in 4 minutes or less.

I was asked to share first and this is the transcript from that night…

As a teenager, I read a lot of books…made me feel smart I suppose.

The books I read caused me to believe that it was silly to claim you knew god or knew how to spell his name. I liked to debate the topic with “Christians”.

I dated Lindsey all through high school . She went to a weekend thing at a church and came back believing she had the “holy spirit” living inside her. I broke up with her for that statement

I wasn’t willing to do life with someone that was willing to latch on things that simply weren’t true.

The problem was we believed we loved each other so the separation hurt…

A couple months later I jumped on an opportunity to move to Fremont to run a print shop for my families business in Chicago.

I quickly found myself with an opportunity to provide tons of printing for Microsoft. In order to do it, a guy had to come out and “certify” my shop.

The meeting was set for 2:00…

At 10:00 I received via fedx a package from Lindsey, I tore into not knowing what I was hoping to find, but surely not what I found…A king James study bible with a note that read…”I love you and miss you but moreover I want Christ for you, take some time with these pages, it will change your life.”

It pissed me off and I threw it across the room and it landed on a table clear on the other side.

At 2:00 Shawn Coleman came in, scanned the room, saw the bible and smiled…”I didn’t realize you were a believer, this is great!”

Yep, I lied

He went on and on about his precious Jesus and I nodded and smiled. At the end he insisted that we start meeting on Tuesdays for bible study since I hadn’t plugged into a church yet.

Great, I lied.

30 min into the 1st meeting I confessed I didn’t believe and he confessed that he knew I was full of it all along. He challenged me to take the high road and engage for a while for the sake of knowledge. I agreed. He made it clear that I should come each week, armed with questions and he would come with answers. I’m like, GAME ON,

so I brought em every week, dinosaurs, Hindu’s, aids, divorce, tofu, turkey bacon, anything I could think of that seemed to prove there was no god. He responded with a grace I’d never experienced before and it caused me to think…

Eventually he invited me to an event called promise keepers and I reluctantly accepted.

Holy crap, I always thought Catholics’ hated Baptists’ who hated Pentecostal’s who hated Lutherans’ and they all got together to hate the Episcopalians’ and Methodists’ but this place was blowing my mind. All of the sudden music starts playing and they all grab hands and start singing this song…”It’s better than life so I’ll glorify you, spirit within me call out my name, I have found your love heals my soul.”

All at once, the reasoning from my past, Shawns’ answers, my heart…it all came crashing in at this crossroads and I was being transformed. As much as I didn’t want it, I was beginning to believe it.

Dude gets up and starts telling us about how we really don’t deserve a relationship with God in the 1st place but we are given an opportunity to have one anyhow through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, Eventually he invites anyone who has decided to confess their sin, and accept this gift to come forward.

Half the place starts bum rushing the stage and I get the Jim Jones Kool-aid feeling so I don’t move.

Long way home that night, feeling like I should have drank the Kool aid like everyone else. Shawn pulls up in my driveway and says, “you don’t have to do it like that, if you have stuff to say to your maker, get in there and say it!”

I start cryin and ran to my house, get to my room and hit my knees. An hour later I stood up having given my life to Christ for real. I acknowledged I was a screw up, I accepted the gift that came through Christ’s death and resurrection and I promised not to be one of those pew sitting Christians that said they believed but behaved like they had the key that unlocked the door to eternity, and it was only for them.

Fast forward…Each day since that day has been better than each day prior to that one as I’ve sought after Gods heart and worked to point others toward him.

Today…I fish!

“And Jesus saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”—Matthew 4:19.

4 thoughts on “The reason I fish for men…

  1. Wow, John! I’m not sure how I’ve never actually heard this story, but it’s a pretty great one! I’m excited to see you blogging – it’s always a treat to read your writing.

  2. Awesome blog and testimony! God’s timing is always perfect so that everything you went through brought you to a specific point where you could accept Him for He is…

  3. John,
    You are awesome and I had truly just begun following Jesus and God gave me our friendship to keep me moving in the right direction. So here I am in Mexico, seeking His face and pouring my life out daily through the lives of the students. Keep me posted in all you do. God Bless you and Rebecca.

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