I once said to the Master, Jesus, “Go away from me Lord, for I am a sinful man!” Yet, I was forgiven by Him and blessed to be a part of His Father’s redemptive plan.
I remember when Andrew came to me with some news that truly amazed–that by way of John the Baptist, he had found the Messiah who was to be praised!
Jesus became our teacher, and we left our nets to follow Him. This meant leaving our daily livelihood, so we weren’t simply doing so on a whim.
No, we knew that this was big. We began to see many miracles taking place–miracles of healing, provision, and protection were wrought by Him, revealing to all God’s grace.
The lame, the blind, and the deaf were finding that the Master was always willing. We disciples saw Him calm the sea during a storm that had been frighteningly chilling.
Another time, faith arose within me to walk towards Him upon the sea. He quickly saved me from sinking below the depths when fear had gotten the better of me.
Once, Jesus took me with James and John on a destined mountain climb, where He was transfigured before us–Elijah and Moses appeared at the time.
I suggested that three tabernacles be built for each, not knowing just what to say. Then a cloud came around us with a message from God on that remarkable day.
It was the voice of His Father in heaven, telling us that this was His beloved Son, and that we should listen to Jesus–His raiment was white as no launderer could have done.
Just as quickly as it had begun, the experience ended and we were alone. We often could expect the unexpected–such was His ministry’s tone.
HIs raising of Lazarus from the dead wasn’t envisioned by any of us disciples, though. Imagine our reaction when we saw death reversed to loose Lazarus and let him go.
I once gave the Lord the use of my boat, for Him to minister from to those on shore…only to be given back the catch of a lifetime–He gave back to us always more!
“You are the Christ, the Son of the living God!” I declared to Him one day. He said His Father in heaven had revealed that truth to me about the Son, who had taught us all to pray.
At the Passover meal, I was taken aback when Jesus came to me to wash my feet. I allowed Him, though, for He said to be a part of Him, it was a duty I needed to let Him meet.
What a blessed remembrance, to have spent that time with the Lord in the upper room…before His betrayal and crucifixion and eventual resurrection from the tomb.
Of course, I felt remorse for my own denial of Him–my boasted loyalty and support having failed. But afterwards, I came to my senses, realizing that I was one…for whom, to the cross, He’d been nailed.
We disciples were so happy when He appeared to us after His glorious resurrection–and later were so glad to spread the news that Jesus is Lord…by the promised Spirit’s direction.
I loved to tell of Him throughout the following years and was always looking toward…that time of my reunion with Him, the Master and Teacher whom we all had adored.
P. A. Oltrogge