You probably know him as a disciple of Jesus, one of the twelve. He’s not well known in scripture, not like his brother Simon Peter anyway. He didn’t write any of the Bible, and he doesn’t have a creative nickname for himself like John, the disciple whom Jesus loved. But Andrew was one of the very first disciples to meet Jesus.
Andrew followed Jesus and stayed for a while. Then scripture is super clear that the first thing Andrew did was to find his brother Simon and tell him, “We have found the Messiah.” John 1:41 (NIV)
Andrew embraced Jesus’ invitation by turning around and extending it to those around him. Though he wasn’t an influencer who swayed people with his vast knowledge or compelled people with a magnetic personality or impressed people with eloquent speech, Andrew was influenced by the One he spent his days following. Andrew couldn’t help but introduce people to the God he knew.
In a world of influencers, be an introducer.
Every time Andrew’s name shows up in scripture he’s connecting someone to Jesus. His brother, Simon Peter, walked on water because Andrew brought him to Jesus (see John 1:41-42), five thousand people ate on that grassy hillside because Andrew brought a boy with a small lunch to Jesus (see John 6:8-9), and the Gentiles found the truth they were seeking because Andrew brought them to Jesus (see John 12:20-22).
Rather than attempt to influence those around him, Andrew was influenced by Jesus.
Andrew recognized everyday opportunities to witness the kingdom of God. I picture him thrusting his own kingdom lenses into the hands of others so that they too could experience the mystery of God. To Andrew, nothing was too small in the hands of Jesus, nothing was off limits. Neither was anyone disqualified.
When the Greeks came to Phillip—Jews did not associate with Greeks, so they likely chose Philip, the disciple with a Greek name—he turned to Andrew. And Andrew did what he did best. He went to Jesus, the King who would soon go to the cross to die in order to fling the doors of the kingdom open wide to all people, Jew and Gentile alike.
I don’t know about you, but I have my own Andrews—people who have extended a hand or a brand new perspective or have just walked alongside of me on my way to meet Jesus. None of them are famous or well-known, but every single one reflects the most gorgeous expression of the Spirit of God. And I am eternally grateful for each of them.
In a world of influencers, be influenced by the Spirit.
Andrew’s calling is ours: to notice the presence of God in our midst, to share our kingdom view, and to bring those who thirst to the source of living water. The way the Spirit of God expresses Himself will look different from person to person. That’s the beauty of the Body of Christ. Paul put it this way:
Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 1 Corinthians 12:4-7 (ESV)
We were once thirsty, we were once blind, we were once seeking something more… and we accepted Jesus’ invitation. We discovered Him, the treasure we will be discovering for the rest of our days. We can flaunt our opinions, we can nurture our carefully manicured spheres of influence, or we can just get to work introducing people to Jesus using what He’s given us.
You don’t need an outrageous following on social media, and you certainly don’t need all the answers. You don’t even need to be particularly outgoing. Do you know Jesus? That’s plenty. Be an Andrew. Be an introducer. Let the Spirit of God influence you so that when people encounter you, they encounter Him.
In a world of influencers trying to change people, be an introducer of Jesus, our only hope for lasting change.
By Kelly Sobieski