Many of us have heard the story from John 21 of when the disciples were fishing all night, caught nothing then when Jesus gave them a one sentence pointer their problem was immediately solved. Pretty impressive. I wish I could solve my problems that quickly.
I reread that story this morning and wanted to share some points that popped out at me.
- Jesus called out to them,"Friend, haven't you any fish?" He knew the answer. He wanted to engage with them though. He has always wanted to engage with us. His heart is for us. Also He called them friends. I love that. We have zero business being called friends by Jesus. I know my heart and what goes on inside my head. So does He. And He initiates the term friend. Wow.
- Jesus can easily see what the fisherman can't see. He effortlessly solved the problems that stumped the professionals. The fishermen were standing in the middle of the situation (all night long mind you) and they came up empty-handed. He was all the way over on the shore, a carpenter, and He cracked the code with one sentence. Granted, the fish listen to Him. An unfair advantage, to be sure. Good thing this wasn't a fishing contest.
- When Jesus provided the catch, it was the mother lode. I don't even know what "the mother lode" means but I know it's a whole lot. He is generous with us.
- Their nets didn't break under the stress of 153 fish. God is conscious to not give us too much. This is very important to camp on when our hearts feel like they are surely being torn apart inside our chest. Remember. He made you. And you are His friend. He's got this.
- I love that John told us there were 153 fish caught. There is probably a deep spiritual reason for it that I don't get. All I know is, it makes me smile. I wonder if Jesus told them it was 153 or if He made them count them. I digress.
- John, known as the disciple Jesus loved, recognized first that the man on shore was Jesus. They had always had a special connection.
- Peter couldn't contain himself once he (finally) caught on to who the man was. He couldn't wait the 2 minutes it would take until the boat reached the shore. He jumped out of the boat and ran to the Lord. This is both irritating and convicting. He didn't help bring the fish out or anything. This reminds me of something my kids would do every time we come home from the grocery store. I get to carry the 153 fish inside while they run off. It's convicting, however, because He had a single focus from which he was not willing to veer. He spotted God, he ran after God. Nothing else mattered at that moment.
- The disciples "got it" at different times. But they all eventually got it. The Johns in the group need to bear with the slower ones. The slower ones need not be discouraged.
- Jesus asked them to come and eat breakfast. That is how we can know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Just kidding. Seriously though, He does call us to come to Him and be satisfied. To have our very real needs met.
My prayer is that today you would be as blessed as I was by remembering this simple yet profound story of that fishing trip from a couple of years back.