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Community Awareness
January 23, 1994

MARK 1:14-20

The lesson this morning tells us that when Jesus began his ministry, he called Simon, Andrew, James, and John to be disciples. They were fishermen and Jesus said to them, "Come, follow me, and I will make you fish for people."

Those who hear the gospel--those who repent and believe the good news that the Kingdom of God is near, are invited to follow Jesus. Following Jesus is an action. Those who follow Jesus "fish for people."

Jesus calls us, not to lethargy; but to action.

Jesus calls us, not to comfort; but to action that might make us uncomfortable.

Jesus calls us, not to complacency; but to caring.

Jesus calls us, not to withdraw from the world out there; but to involvement.

Jesus calls us, not to be a pleasant, nice, comfortable social club; but to be the church, the body of the Christ who acted when confronted by need.

Jesus calls us not just to minister to nice church kids from good families, but to minister to kids who come from dysfunctional families, kids who are angry, discourteous, rude, belligerent, frightened, and sometimes violent.

Jesus calls us, not to a clean, pure religious holiness; but to get our hands dirty in the rough, violent, graffiti-smeared places and lives of people.

Jesus calls, "Follow me." And there's no place to which Jesus won't go, and there's no one to whom Jesus would turn his back.

Jesus calls us to action, and today we are privileged to welcome Dave Dias to our pulpit who will give us a clear call to action. We appreciate what he has done and is doing for the improvement of the quality of life for everyone who lives in Merced. I invite you to listen. I pray you will listen to hear how we can follow Jesus.

© 1994 Douglas I. Norris