Monday, April 19, 2010

Empty net

It happened this way: Simon Peter, Thomas (Didymus), Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two other disciples were together. "I'm going out to fish," Simon Peter told them, and they said, "We'll go with you."
John 21:1b-2 (NIV)

The setting is by the Sea of Tiberias, which is probably the official Roman name for the Sea of Galilee, the area's popular name. The event involves the third, visible appearance of the Risen Christ to His disciples.

We're not told how or why the disciples came to be back in their home region of Galilee after the events of the Passover week in Jerusalem. For three years, these men walked with the "headliner." In recent days, however, they hid behind locked doors in fear of the Jewish leaders. They didn't seem to have a clear purpose in mind in spite of Jesus' commissioning in John 20:21-23.

Some scholars suggest based on Peter's comment that he bailed on his calling to "fish for men" and had gone back to his old career of fishing for fish. Considering recent events, Peter's attitude may have been partly the result of discouragement over his threefold denial of Jesus during the trials. Perhaps the fishing trip was out of economic necessity. Whatever the reason, it's interesting to note that when the seven men picked up their old profession, they caught nothing after fishing all night.

Life doesn't always turn out the way we think it should. Quite frankly, sometimes the trouble with life is that it is so daily. Things don't go the way we expect. We become buried by feelings of disappointment. Discouragement threatens to drag us away from God's call for our life. Some of God's best people struggled with the same thing.

Reading through the Gospels, it becomes quite clear that more than anything, Jesus cares about people. He came to our planet because people needed what only He could bring to us. And, as you probably know. He went to the extremes of self-sacrifice to prove how committed He was to meeting our needs.

Jesus showed up on the beach of the Sea of Galilee and called Peter back to His side.Whether you're struggling through a season of disappointment, a time of uncertainty, or the memory of personal failure is still fresh in your mind, my friend, listen. He's calling you back to Him.

Blessings, dear friend.
Faithfully Following

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