A trailer for The Chosen – a TV series dramatizing the life of Jesus – caught my eye the other day with a depiction of the catch of fish from Luke 5:
When He had finished speaking, He said to Simon, “Put out into deep water and let down your nets for a catch.”
“Master,” Simon replied, “we’ve worked hard all night long and caught nothing! But at Your word, I’ll let down the nets.”
When they did this, they caught a great number of fish, and their nets began to tear. So they signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them; they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink. (v. 4-7)
The TV interpretation shows Jesus smiling cryptically at the exhausted fishermen, his gaze wearing down their weariness, as they can think only of the fruitlessness of their endeavors thus far. Those nets are heavy; fishing is back-breaking work.
Anyone else been letting down their nets for a long, unrewarding time?
Your net might be those children you’re raising, as it feels like you’re doing everything and yet accomplishing nothing.
Or the endless financial sacrifices you’re making because you know it’s supposed to pay off somewhere down the line.
Or the prayers you keep offering up for your unsaved friend, as he lingers at the edge of hell with no seeming incentive to step away.
Like the walls of Jericho, not even the slightest pebble seems to be crumbling. Yet you keep letting down your net.
If it were just for a pat on the back, or an extra paycheck, you might not do it.
But would you do it for Christ if he asked? Even after year after year of anticlimax and frustration, even after season and season of seeing so little progress you doubt whether God is in this in the first place, would you do it for Christ if you asked? Would you stifle the groan and let down your net again?
Who’s doing the asking, changes everything.
He certainly let down enough for me.
If it seems like my blog has been heavy on faith and perseverance in prayer lately, that’s because it has been. I’ve alluded, regrettably cryptically, to some tremendous happenings at my church in the last year. I hope to elaborate more soon. But we’ve been led through a long season of prayer, groaning at the length and dogged requirements (though those for whom we’ve been praying have certainly endured far, far more). It’s forced us to confront how willing we are to keep letting down our nets.
Our prayers have been rewarded.
I love how the fishermen’s nets are met, not just with a typical catch, but with an immense, boat-breaking mountain of fish. Jericho, too, presents us with this image – the walls coming down not a bit at a time, but all at once, at the time God sets for it.
For that kind of faithfulness, I will pray.
I’m glad you tuned in today. If you found this post to be of value, please feel free to share it on social media. Thanks a bunch.