…and immediately they left their boat and their father and followed him. Matthew 4:22
He let them left him.
They were in the middle of their livelihood. They were helping him out feed the family. The sons were mending the nets with their father when they got the calling to mend the world. Without questions, the brothers followed Jesus. Without questions, Zebedee allowed his sons.
There is a great amount of stories written about the brothers but not about their father. Allowing his sons to leave him and live for Jesus is a sign of how this father knows God’s plan for his sons. Letting his sons walk after Jesus and not after him is a symbol of his hands offering his sons to the Messiah. Right in the middle of their work, he moved his motivation behind God’s work. A father recognizing the Father.
He is my Zebedee.
We were not a well to do family. I have one older sister working at that time. My older brother has taken over our family business from our father. Another older brother, who was expected to help out the family in a bigger way, suddenly died. My father expected me to contribute to the family income as I garnered my college degree. However, before I graduated, I came to know Christ in a personal way. At the last year of my studies, I was actively serving in a college missions movement. As I was waiting for the board examination results, I volunteered to serve. After the results came in, I felt God’s call to spend more time to work for the college movement. Postponing my entry to the secular world will be a difficulty for my family. I know I will have a hard time to get my father’s nod on this.
I was cringing nervous as I spoke with him about my intentions to stay in the campus to work for the ministry. I expected him to raise objections. He has to. After all his hard work, after all these years, here I am telling him I will not be contributing to the family’s sinking funds for I will be working for free for the movement. He has been waiting for this day for me to step up into the plate and swing my bat. After I gave my piece, he said yes. He allowed me to serve. He allowed me to follow. He let me leave him to love Him.
Behind a disciple is a father who let him walk away from him and walk towards the Father. Behind a minister or a priest is a father who recognized the Father as the father of all. Behind a John and/or a James, is a father — a Zebedee.