Jesus asked Simon Peter to go out into the deep water and let down his nets for a catch.
“Master we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything,” responded Peter (Luke 5:5). He was tired, grumpy and worried about how he was going to pay his bills. And here’s Jesus, a carpenter, not a fisherman, telling Peter what to do.
Peter knows it’s the wrong time of day to fish. If they didn’t get anything all night, how would they catch something now? But, in the same breath, he responds with “But because you say so, I will let down the nets” (5:5).
They fill two boat loads with fish and they both begin to sink. It didn’t make any sense to fish at this time of day or in this depth of water. He knows at once it is a miracle and he falls to his feet in the presence of holiness saying, “Go away from me Lord, I am a sinful man” (5:8). Just a few short minutes ago he was tired and grumpy and lacking in faith. Now he is overwhelmed by the power and presence of God.
That day Peter chose to leave everything and follow Jesus. He left his trade, his family, his friends, and his reputation. He gave it all up to learn from the great Rabbi.
What about providing for his family while he followed Jesus? Perhaps that big haul of fish would have taken care of their financial needs for a time.
Jesus cares about all the details of our lives. When he asks us to follow him he will provide everything we need. Our response is to surrender and trust. And a dose of humility like Peter’s, recognizing that we are in the presence of an awesome God, is a good idea, too.
It’s okay to tell God how we feel. Peter felt tired and hopeless and he told Jesus that. However, in the same breath he agreed to obey Jesus.
Peter faced issues that we still struggle with today – feelings and faith. He was honest with his feelings, yet stepped out in faith. And he was likely concerned about his family, another timeless heartbeat, yet he put Jesus first, trusted Him and followed. He’s a powerful example for me today.