“I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear; but now my eye sees you; therefore I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes.” Job 42:5-6
How many times did you hear about Jesus before the message finally made sense to you? The last survey I read said that, on average, it takes about 7 times to hear the Gospel message before a person places their faith in Jesus Christ. Seven times!
It is so important that we do whatever it takes to get the Message to people. “Fishers of men,” by definition, are to be about the task of sharing the Gospel with others. And if it takes seven times of hearing the Gospel before a person responds, then the “fisher of men” should never take rejection of the Message personally. He needs to be willing and committed to patiently share the message again and again and again as the opportunity presents itself. Some of the people you will be sharing with are just not ready yet. They are not going to understand no matter how eloquently you share the Message.
It’s impossible, though, to respond to the message unless you hear it. And just because you hear it doesn’t mean you get it. But once you “get it” then everything changes. Life and forgiveness are then immediately experienced. That’s incentive enough to never give up on a person. A “fisher of men” is committed to repeatedly and creatively sharing the good news until a person gets it.
What is it that causes a person to move from “hearing” to “seeing?” It is the Holy Spirit who does the convicting. He opens the eyes of a person so they can see the personal sin that prevents one from having a relationship with Jesus Christ. The Spirit of God will use circumstances like poor health, financial crisis, broken relationships, and shattered dreams to get our attention and force us to look. But we can be pretty stubborn and refuse to open our eyes. So, as “fishers of men,” we must keep on sharing until the Message breaks through.
Have you given up on someone you know? You’ve told them about Jesus on numerous occasions and they still aren’t interested? Don’t give up. Pray that God enables their blind eyes to see. Ask God to put others in their path who will share the truth about Jesus. As long as you are able, keep on loving people unconditionally and sharing the greatest news of all. It will be worth it. Plus, as a “fisher of men” that’s what you’ve been uniquely wired to do.