"...Jesus said to Simon, 'Fear not; from henceforth you shall catch men.' And when they had brought their boats to land, they left all and followed him." Luke 5:10-11
Jesus, continuing to do the work of the Father who sent him, found himself pressed in on all sides by a multitude desiring to hear a word from him. In that he was on the shore of Lake Gennesaret, he entered the boat of his friend Simon and asked him to put out a little from the land so that he could address the people.
When this was concluded, he instructed Simon to launch out into the deep and put down his nets (Simon was a fisherman). Simon noted the oddity of the request, because the traditional time of fishing had passed and that when he had fished, he caught nothing. Nevertheless, he complied with Jesus' instructions. In so doing, he caught so many fish that his boat and that of his partners, James and John, were in danger of sinking.
Beloved, Jesus gives us the greatest example of being about the Father's business. He showed that there would always be a need to care for the people. Through the metaphor of Simon's great catch, he also showed that "the harvest (of souls) was abundant but that the workers were few." We are to be about our Father's business at all times and in all ways. As all Christians are part of the harvest, we in turn need to harvest others.
As they made it to shore, Jesus supplied them with their mission in life; they were to become fishers of men.
As we bring to a close our Water Gospels and make plans to exit the ship tomorrow and thus bring to a conclusion the St. Louis Area Family Gospel Cruise, let us take this final lesson with us: We have learned much on the sea, but the work of the Lord is on the land. That said, we must observe a particular caution.
In John 21, Jesus has been crucified and resurrected and could now be seen interacting with the people, but what about his apostles? "Simon Peter, and Thomas called Didymus, and Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, and the sons of Zebedee, and two others of His disciples were together. Simon Peter *said to them, “I am going fishing.” They *said to him, “We will also come with you.” They went out and got into the boat; and that night they caught nothing." John 21:2-3
Once we have left the classroom of the sea, let us not return to it and indulge old habits and practices. We have been given a great mission. Let us pursue it with all vigor. To go back, as the disciples found, produces nothing.
Loving Like Jesus,