John 21 - So Now What?

Specific Text: John 21:1-14

As we look at our printed Bibles, the accounts of Jesus' appearances to His disciples after He was raised from the dead seem to come in quick sequence. There's only a few few paragraphs between when the empty tomb was discovered and when Thomas was able to touch Jesus' wounds. But there were several weeks that went by in between these events.

We read these stories knowing how things would turn out. We know that Peter will preach an amazing sermon on Pentecost, and that he will have a long and successful career as a missionary and church leader before he becomes a martyr. But at this point Peter doesn't know this. He knows Jesus is alive, but how is he supposed to know what's going to happen next? It's now been several weeks since Resurrection Day and Peter has no direction as to what to do next; he wants to follow Jesus, but Jesus doesn't seem to be there.

So Peter goes back to what he knows. Peter goes fishing. Keep in mind this isn't just throwing a line in the water while sipping on some lemonade type of fishing that we might do for an afternoon of relaxation, this is buy an expensive boat and rigging, assemble a crew and go commercial fishing to make a living since there doesn't seem to be a future in the disciplining industry. Peter seems to be giving up his dedication to following Jesus because even if Jesus alive, He is gone.

The lesson in all of this is very similar to what we saw yesterday when reading about Doubting Thomas. You will have doubts in life, and you will have times where it seems like Jesus is alive, but He's nowhere to be seen in your life. The thing you need to learn from Peter's return to fishing in John 21 is to widen the scope when it comes to evaluating your life.

Peter was too far dialed in. He was evaluating his circumstances from a daily, or even weekly perspective. If he would have zoomed out, and seen how his life had changed so much over the three years he knew Jesus, it would have been easier to see that even though things seemed bleak at the time, God would continue to remain faithful to him.

Keep a broad perspective when contemplating your own circumstances so you can better see where God is directing you.

Prayer for the Day: Father in Heaven, thank you for all of the amazing ways you have led and directed my life over the years. When the times come where it doesn't seem like you are there, help me to step back and realize what you have done in the past so that I can have confidence for the future. Amen.

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