Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Things Can Change Quickly

Now it happened that while the crowd was pressing around Him and listening to the word of God, He was standing by the lake of Gennesaret; and He saw two boats lying at the edge of the lake; but the fishermen had gotten out of them and were washing their nets. And He got into one of the boats, which was Simon's, and asked him to put out a little way from the land. And He sat down and began teaching the people from the boat. When He had finished speaking, He said to Simon, "Put out into the deep water and let down your nets for a catch." Simon answered and said, "Master, we worked hard all night and caught nothing, but I will do as You say and let down the nets." When they had done this, they enclosed a great quantity of fish, and their nets began to break; so they signaled to their partners in the other boat for them to come and help them. And they came and filled both of the boats, so that they began to sink. (Luke 5:1-7)
Jesus offered these fishermen a change. How many times does real change occur in life?  Most of us get up each day and do as we have always done. We gather, prepare our nets, row our boats from the shore, cast into the deep and pray there is a catch worth our efforts.  Some catches are better than others, but the object is still the same - catch enough today to make a living.
There can be some joy in non-eventful daily living.  In fact, if I were offered a life that was average, without any unpredictable swings of success and misfortune, I would be tempted to take it.  Getting up each day, going to work, coming home to family, and looking forward to the weekend, has merit.  We rarely understand how fulfilling something is until the unexpected happens and threatens to take it all away.  But even when we are content, we find ourselves asking, “Is this all there is?”
Peter, James, and John were no different then you and me. Their daily lives were as blue-collar as anyone’s. They lived day-to-day and net to net. Every morning, when they arrived for work one question dominated their lives: Where are the fish today?
On this particular day they were met with misfortune.  Each cast netted little.  The fish were nowhere to be found.  Enter Jesus of Nazareth, a friend who offered them a suggestion. Put out into the deep water and let down your nets for a catch, he said.  Peter’s response is like anyone who has worked all day at an unsuccessful project, “Master, we’ve worked all night and haven’t caught anything. But if you want, we will let down the nets.”  What happened next was a miracle. Where once there were no fish now there were so many they had to call for the second boat to handle the load. The number of fish nearly sank both of them. 
Life can often look hum drum and even grim. But change can happen very quickly.  Lots of things in life can happen in an instant that change the whole day; they can even change your life.  You just have to keep casting the net and waiting for the fish. 
The great musician George Frederick Handel was dogged with misfortune. He had debt upon debt, despair upon despair. For four years he could neither walk nor write.  At age 60 he thought his life was finished. Then he was challenged by a friend to write a sacred oratorio. He read the Scriptures and went to work. He wrote his crowning achievement, The Messiah. Today, it is considered one of the greatest oratorios ever written.
Jesus knew there were fish yet to be caught and Handel’s friend knew there was music yet to be written.  Both situations seemed hopeless.  Peter speaks for every one of us who are willing to try again, "I will do as You say and let down the nets." Luke 5:5

...for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light (for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth), trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord. Ephesians 5:8-10

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