Scripture Reading: Numbers 15:1-16:35 / Luke 4:38-5:16 / Psalm 37:1-9
The most enjoyable thing about fishing is catching fish. It isn’t real exciting when you don’t catch any fish but when they are biting and you reel them in as soon as you cast…now that’s fun! But, any fisherman will tell you that a bad day of fishing is better than a good day at work! That may be true for many but that isn’t true if your job is “fishing”.
Simon Peter, Andrew, James and John were fishermen by trade and had caught nothing after a long hard night of fishing. A crowd gathered nearby as Jesus was teaching and they began to press Him back against the water’s edge. Jesus got in Simon’s boat and asked Peter to push it off shore so He could continue to teach.
After Jesus was done, He gave Peter some unusual instructions, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” (Luke 5:4) There is not a fisherman alive that doesn’t want to know where the fish are and that they are biting. Jesus gives them more than a “tip”; He gives them a “guarantee” yet it defied their logic and experience.
Peter replied, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.” (Luke 5:5) They had cast their net out, pulled it in over and over again without catching anything. They didn’t have a great deal of faith because of their experience. Simon’s response was indicative of experience; his experience led to fact, which led to opinion, resulting in discouragement and leaving him hopeless.
They toiled, were tired and had cleaned their nets. Besides, they fished during the productive times of darkness rather than the useless daylight hours. Their nets were also designed for shallow waters, not the deep waters where Jesus told them to go. Jesus instructed them to go into unfamiliar waters. Remember, the Lord’s directives are not to be reasoned, just believed! Sometimes we “fish” or “live” in the shallowness of our own feelings instead of the depths of His faithfulness!
Simon Peter reluctantly agreed to obey and the results were more than he ever experienced or imagined. The catch was so great that their nets began to break and boat began to sink. Peter called for reinforcements and both boats were barely afloat from the enormous miracle.
If Jesus is to be involved in our lives, He must be in control…launch out into the deep. What has God called you to do or launch out into? We can clean our nets and object to The Lord’s directives or simply trust and follow His leading despite our discouragement or doubt. Do you want empty nets or breaking nets…a full boat or docked boat? We need to get out of the shallow waters because our blessings are not where we remain but are in the new, different and deep. Launch out!