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Luke 5:4 (NIV) – When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”
It is virtually impossible to not love Simon Peter. I love his brashness, his tendency toward food-in-mouth disease, his self-confidence, his weaknesses and his ultimate life outcome.
In this passage, Simon was the one who would have appeared to be the expert. He’d fished the waters of the Sea of Galilee for probably all his life. His face must have been weathered by the hot sun and wind that sweeps the lake, his arms and hands muscle-y and strong. He was in a sense a very simple man, not a complex thinker like Paul. He was, most likely, what we would refer to as a “salt of the earth” kind of human being.
And now, this rabbi who may have never fished in his life tells Peter how to manage his business. You can hear the frustration and resignation in Peter’s voice, can’t you? I can. “Well, Jesus, you may have slept last night but we didn’t. We were out working while you were sleeping and we’re tired and want to go to home. But, because it is you who have spoken, I will do as you ask.”
Have you ever felt beaten, defeated – even at your own game? Do you find yourself at the very edge of your endurance and think you can’t take another step, only to find that you must keep moving?
Peter recognized the authority with which Jesus spoke. It wasn’t that Jesus shouted at him. It was because Peter realize that when Jesus speaks, it is foolish to not listen. This is the same Peter who will one day step out of a boat in the middle of a raging storm because the same voice told him it would be okay.
What is Jesus saying to you? Is he asking you to take a step that seems to make no sense to you? Is he asking you to do something that not only makes no sense, but which may seem crazy, fool-hardy, even bordering on the suicidal? If Jesus has said it, we can trust it. And when He has said things through Scripture, we would do well to heed them, too…and to obey.
PRAYER: Give us hearts like Peter’s, Lord, that are willing to do whatever You say and to obey you without hesitation! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
© 2015, Galen C. Dalrymple.
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