Our world is a rapidly changing place. Technology changes. News changes. Words change. Ideas and Ideals. They all change. With everything around us changing so much, life can feel as though we are standing in shifting sands. Where do we find security, hope, peace, and purpose in a world that is so all over the place? Where is the place where we can firmly plant our feet? We have to choose the correct anchor. An anchor that is secure and strong. One that carries with it weight and authority. Today’s blog will be on the importance of choosing a secure anchor.
What is the purpose of an anchor? To keep the ship from floating out to sea. It’s supposed to be heavy enough to withstand the winds and the waves. To keep the ship secure and steady. That’s why you don’t see anchors that are “decorative.” Anchors serve a particular purpose, and they are designed in that way.
In the same way that anchors serve a purpose for ships, we have anchors in our lives that serve a purpose. Things that we turn to. Things that are of great value to us. When everything starts to go sideways, we count on them to steady the ship.
They can be anything. From family to friends to activities to habits. They promise to bring us happiness. Security. Comfort. Hope.
Do our anchors actually actually do their job though?
Do they actually keep us secure? Safe? Loved? Happy?
We like to think that they do. We like to think that our jobs provide us with security. And that our money provides us with happiness. And that our families with love. And our escapes with bliss.
But do they?________________________________________________________________________________________
Peter and his brother Andrew were fishermen. That’s what they did. Who they were. It was their livelihood. It brought them security. Happiness. Comfort. In essence, it was the anchor for their lives.
Then Jesus came along. From the shores of Galilee, he called them to come and follow Him and He would make them fishers of men (Matthew 4:19).
In that moment, I would have been thinking, who is this stranger that calls from the shore to come follow Him? Who does He think that He is? Doesn’t he know that fishing is my life, my livelihood, my security? Fishing brings me happiness. It comforts me. It’s an escape.
Why would I give up fishing for you? My comfort for you? My security for you? My happiness for you? I don’t even know you!
The response of Peter and Andrew astounds and confuses me: Immediately they left their nets and followed him (Matthew 4:20).
Peter and Andrew didn’t take time to think about the consequences of their actions. They didn’t tell Jesus to come back tomorrow after they had made their pro’s and cons list. They didn’t whine, complain, or cry. They just simply dropped their nets, immediately, and followed Him.
Why were Peter and Andrew able to do this?
Well, maybe they realized that what they had anchored their lives to didn’t actually fulfill them like they hoped. That maybe being anchored to fishing wasn’t all what it was cracked up to be. That it was more of a burden than a comfort. More of an obsession than a pleasure. And that maybe Jesus offered an anchor that was lasting and actually secure.
Isn’t this the same with us?
We spend all our lives putting anchors down that promise a lot, but fulfill very little. Anchors of money and success. Anchors of Pleasure and happiness. Anchors of escape and distraction. And they all fall short. We are left empty because we have become anchored to things that have broken their promises.
So what should we anchor our lives to?
In Hebrews 6, we see that truth of the gospel is the real and lasting anchor for our souls, and that it frees us from all the other anchors that weigh us down.
“We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek” (Hebrews 6:19-20).
To be anchored to Jesus, and the hope of the gospel, frees us to be us. Loved fully. Passionate. Confident. Known.
It frees us from the pressures of running around to find hope and satisfaction in what we do, how much money we make, and who knows us.
It frees us from the constant checking of messages on our social media, the constant exhaustion of the climbing of the corporate ladder, and the escaping of the hurts and pains in our lives.
Me specifically, it frees me from the pressures of this blog being perfect. It frees me from the exhaustion of trying to be recognized. It frees me from the fears of loneliness. It frees me from obsessing. Because I’m secure. And loved. And held. By Jesus.
And what it frees us to be is “fishers of men.” It frees us to love others well. And we are finally able to love others well because our lives are secure through our anchor in Jesus.
Jesus frees us to be outward focused.
Today, this blog may be a reality check for you. A wake up call. As it is for me. To assess the anchors that we have put down and to see if they are doing their job.
If they aren’t, what keeps us from pulling them up?
I’m not saying is not hard. I totally get it. But it’s worth it. It’s worth it to reach our potential instead of settling. It’s worth it to truly live instead of just surviving. It’s truly worth it to be anchored to Jesus instead of expecting our secondary anchors to do the job that was only meant for Jesus.
If we, like Peter and Andrew, can see the truth of the Gospel, and the lasting impact of the anchoring of our souls to Jesus, then we too can drop our nets joyfully, pull up our anchors, and joyfully follow Jesus.
Image taken from: https://www.google.com/search?q=anchored&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj2qcWnldndAhUNoFMKHat_DQYQ_AUIDigB&biw=1440&bih=758#imgrc=WzvlDvB6hKHL7M: