Lenten Daily Devotional: 2/22/21

One day Jesus was standing beside Lake Gennesaret when the crowd pressed in around him to hear God’s word. Jesus saw two boats sitting by the lake. The fishermen had gone ashore and were washing their nets. Jesus boarded one of the boats, the one that belonged to Simon, then asked him to row out a little distance from the shore. Jesus sat down and taught the crowds from the boat. When he finished speaking to the crowds, he said to Simon, “Row out farther, into the deep water, and drop your nets for a catch.”

Simon replied, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and caught nothing. But because you say so, I’ll drop the nets.”

So they dropped the nets and their catch was so huge that their nets were splitting. They signaled for their partners in the other boat to come and help them. They filled both boats so full that they were about to sink. When Simon Peter saw the catch, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Leave me, Lord, for I’m a sinner!” Peter and those with him were overcome with amazement because of the number of fish they caught. James and John, Zebedee’s sons, were Simon’s partners and they were amazed too.

Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid. From now on, you will be fishing for people.” As soon as they brought the boats to the shore, they left everything and followed Jesus.

Enjoy this short reflection from our Care Minister, Doris Clark.

This is Luke’s story of how Jesus chose his first disciples.  What stands out to you in this story?  To whom was Jesus speaking?  What was Jesus teaching them?  How did the tired fishermen washing their nets on shore become a part of the story?   How did Jesus’ choice of pulpit allow Simon to be present to His teaching?  What compelling application does this story have for your life?

Jesus was teaching the Word of God to an eager crowd.  Then he turned his attention to a few individuals, those in the boat, specifically to Simon.  He said, “Let’s go fishing.”    Simon protested, “Teacher, we’ve worked hard all night and caught nothing,” but then added, “but because you say so, I will go.”  What had happened that Simon was willing to take the risk?

During these months of COVID safety care, social distancing, avoiding crowds, have we been attentive to Jesus’ personal invitation to “leave the nets” come near and listen?  Jesus has a message for the church, but he also speaks to each of us.  When Simon heard Jesus’ absurd idea to fish in heat of the day out in the deep of the lake, he could have said, “Get real!”  Rather, he said, “Because you say so, I will let down the nets.”    Obedience to Jesus’s teaching may not make sense to us but obedience is the mark of a disciple and obedience brings us into uncharted waters.

The astonishing catch as they let down the nets brought Simon to his real encounter with not as Teacher, but Jesus the Lord.  He fell at Jesus’ knees with acknowledged unworthiness and humility, “Go away; I am a sinful man.”  Jesus did not leave Simon on the floor of the boat, rather gave Simon affirmation and an amazing calling.  Our Lord has not left us in the midst of the pandemic to struggle with anxiety and fear, rather he has spoken his power and love and gives us an amazing calling each day, “Come, follow me, we have work to do!”  Let’s trust His presence and power and joyfully pray:

I’ll say yes, Lord, yes, to Your will and to Your way,

Yes, Lord, yes, I will trust You and obey.

When the Spirit speaks to me with my whole heart I’ll agree

And my answer will be, Yes, Lord, yes.

Lord I give You all the glory for all You’ve given me,

You have filled my life until I over flow;

All I have is Yours to use in any way you choose.

You are Lord of all so how can I say, “No?”

If I never knew the fullness of living in Your will,

I would never know how rich my life could be.

Lord, my willingness to serve is a gift of joy,

For the blessing you have showered over me.

I’ll say yes, Lord, yes, to Your will and to Your way,

Yes, Lord, yes, I will trust You and obey.*

For yours is the Kingdom, the power and the glory!


*Lyrics written by Lynn Keesecker (1983)

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