Pause

There are different spiritual gifts but the same Spirit; and there are different ministries and the same Lord; and there are different activities but the same God who produces all of them in everyone.

1 Corinthians 12:4-6

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Listen

One day Jesus was standing beside Lake Gennesaret when the crowd pressed in around him to hear God’s word. Jesus saw two boats sitting by the lake. The fishermen had gone ashore and were washing their nets. Jesus boarded one of the boats, the one that belonged to Simon, then asked him to row out a little distance from the shore. Jesus sat down and taught the crowds from the boat.

Luke 5:1-3

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Think

It’s not often that we hear about preachers needing crowd control because they are so surrounded by people wanting to hear from them, but this is exactly what’s happening with Jesus in these verses. But he’s Jesus, so he doesn’t do what we do: set up a velvet rope or hire a bouncer or have people buy a ticket to be ushered into a numbered seat.

Jesus doesn’t limit the crowd, instead he adapts. If people want to hear him, he will find a way for them to be able to hear. Not crowd control; crowd accessibility. And he gets creative, too. Because when the space on the shore of Lake Gennesaret (aka the Sea of Galilee) runs out, he boards a fishing boat so everyone on shore can hear him. No podium or microphone, no lectern or live streaming like we might use today, instead he expands his reach by using what he has available.

This is Jesus’ way, isn’t it? Finding a way to reach everyone.

Emily Peck-McClain

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Pray

Jesus, I want to hear from you. I want to join the crowd around you and tune my ears to your voice. I pray that you remove what is getting in the way of my receiving your words and invite you to be creative to reach me. Humbly I pray, amen.

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Go

Whatever you do, whether in speech or action, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus and give thanks to God the Father through him.

Colossians 3:17

Emily Peck-McClain

Rev. Dr. Emily Peck-McClain is an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church and the Visiting Professor of Christian Formation and Young Adult Ministries at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C. She is also a pastor’s wife and a mom to three great kids. Emily is author of Arm in Arm with Adolescent Girls: Educating into the New Creation.

This is My Father's World

Ken Medema

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