John 21:1 After these things Jesus shewed himself again to the disciples at the sea of Tiberias; and on this wise shewed he himself.
2 There were together Simon Peter, and Thomas called Didymus, and Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, and the sons of Zebedee, and two other of his disciples.
3 Simon Peter saith unto them, I go a fishing. They say unto him, We also go with thee. They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing.
A leader who has no followers is no leader. The disciples were given some explicit instructions from the Lord. Like each of us, they had a responsibility to do God’s work, yet Simon Peter chose instead to go fishing. His decision influenced others to move in the same direction away from the will of God. The disciples blindly followed his lead. The Lord had admonished Peter to strengthen his brethren (Luke 22:32), but under Peter’s leadership, the disciples became weak through disobedience. Perhaps Peter never desired to be a leader. He may have been satisfied to simply follow others, but God knew what was best for Peter and the other apostles. When Peter made the wrong decisions, he had others that he negatively affected. Every leader must consider that the direction he chooses will lead others in his footsteps.
- (For children): God made Jeroboam king over the ten tribes of Israel. Instead of leading the people to worship the true God, he chose to set up two calves of gold and told the people that these were the gods which brought them out of Egypt. His decision caused those people to eventually be taken captive out of their land, never to return.
- (For everyone): Who is following in your footsteps? What kind of influence are you having in the lives of others? Does it please the Lord when others choose to follow your path?
- Have you made wrong decisions only to find that your decisions influence others to likewise make the same unwise decisions? How can you encourage them to go in a different direction?
- Ask the Lord to help you lead others the right way.
- Ask the Lord to help your leadership strengthen other believers.