‘To win…you must deny yourselves.’1 Corinthians 9:25 TLB
There’s a popular saying that ‘nothing really great ever happens in your comfort zone.’ Life with God can be like that. In Luke 5, we see Jesus instruct Simon to take his boat further and further out into the Lake of Gennesaret. First, this is so that Jesus can preach to the people, and then so that Simon can catch masses of fish that he wasn’t expecting. Sometimes God asks us to move away from shore because there are important things out in deep waters. Not all of us are fishermen, so moving away from the safety of the shore can be uncomfortable. However, Jesus shows us in His interaction with Simon that He only calls us out when there’s work to be done, and good things to be netted. If there’s an opportunity or gifting that you’ve been unsure about moving into, this could be the encouragement you need to step out of that comfort zone. If you check in with God and ask Him to keep you within His plan, He’ll have His hand on whatever happens next. Ask Him to open the right doors, and close the wrong ones. That doesn’t mean the way forward will necessarily be easy, or that you’ll be guaranteed success. It does mean that God has you and will lead you. Just like He said to Joshua, ‘Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.’ (Joshua 1:9 ESV). When we keep close to Him, God is right at our side in everything that we do. Whether we’re in our comfort zone, or whether we move outside of it, He’s there with us to protect us and make a way.