Early in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore, but the disciples did not realize that it was Jesus.
He called out to them, "Friends, haven't you any fish?"
"No," they answered.
He said, "Throw your net on the right side of the boat and you will find some." When they did, they were unable to haul the net in because of the large number of fish.
Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, "It is the Lord!"
The disciples spent three amazing years with Jesus. And then one nightmarish day, he was gone. At least in their eyes He was.
Imagine for a moment how they felt. They’d lived with clear purpose and guidance for three years. Now their leader was gone. That had to have felt lost, unguided, and most likely abandoned.
What did they do? They went fishing. Literally.
In John 21:1-14 this rag-tag group of men is lead by Peter. He’s just betrayed his Jesus in a way he never imagined he would. Life as he had known it had spiraled so out of control, he did what came natural. In typical boldness for this man whose name means “rock,” he took charge. He had to do something, so he took back control of his life, got in the boat, and cast his nets. But his nets kept coming back empty.
Peter and the disciples’ story is our story, too. We strain for control of our lives in a world so out of control. We find comfort in the known, in the predictable. Yet, like Peter, our nets keep coming up empty.
What Peter didn’t understand and we can KNOW is that Jesus never leaves us. At Jesus’ bidding from the shore, Peter relinquished control and cast net on the other side. It came back so full they couldn’t even lift their catch into the boat. And not only that, the net didn’t break.
This was the moment that Peter’s eyes were opened, and he knew only his Jesus could do such a miracle. His focus was shifted long enough off himself and his need for control to recognize the One who truly is I AM.
Our natural tendency is to try to be in control of our lives. Especially in times of trial. Yet when we do this we keep our Savior Jesus on the shore when He wants to bring us to safety and provision.
And those times when we are called to let go, our faith is tested. Can we let go long enough to see that we’re casting our nets on the wrong side of the boat? We are called to relinquish our control and attempts to fix our lives and trust Jesus to do what we cannot.
When we do, our nets come up full of his blessings. And the beauty of this, of our precious Savior, is that whenever we look over the bough of our boats of discouragement, we will find Jesus waiting on the shore of hope with open arms.
Praying and believing,
- What area of your life do you see yourself trying to control? What would happen if you let go?
- Read John 21:1-14 slowly and prayerfully. Journal what God reveals to you.
- Write down a prayer of commitment, handing over one area of your life completely to God’s control. Then sign it. When you find you’ve taken control back or are worrying, go back and read your prayer commitment.
Share your voice, heart and love in the comments.
Marching Around Jericho is a spiritual guide. As you read through the pages, powerful and transformative instruction and equipping takes place. We follow Jesus as he leads us around the walls, imparting kingdom truths with each passing, finally arriving at the gates of the walled-off city, our spouse’s unbelieving heart. After the circles in prayer are complete, we arrive fully prepared to command the walls to crumble and be removed, making a way for our spouse to step from the rubble of lies and captivity, into faith and freedom!