Which side of the boat?
When Jesus first called His disciples, He told them, ‘I will make you fishers of men’ (Matthew 4:19 KJV). But even after hearing Him promise to rise from the dead and actually seeing Him alive, they went back to what they were doing before they met Him: fishing. It's true that God will use our past experiences to teach us, but He always leads us forwards. Never back. When fear and uncertainty make us want to go back to the security of what we know, we end up in a similar situation to the one the disciples faced: ‘That night they caught nothing.’ But if God has called you, you’re still called.
Jesus got their attention by saying: ‘Children, have you any food?’ (John 21:5 NKJV). 'Children' could also be translated as 'friends', or even 'lads'. Even if we perform badly, God still calls us His children, His friends, His mates. Next, Jesus tells them: ‘“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!”’ (v.6-7 NIV). Then Jesus ate breakfast with them, renewed their friendship, removed their doubts, and empowered them to change the world.
When we work outside of God’s will, it’s like fishing on the wrong side of the boat; we wear ourselves out from the effort and strain, and end up achieving very little. But things will start to work out when we submit to Christ, renew our friendship with Him, and allow Him to direct us. So if things haven't been working out lately, check which side of the boat you're fishing on!
Have you headed back to familiar ground recently, instead of trusting God? Spend some time talking to Him about any fears or insecurity you might have, and ask Him to help you renew your confidence and move forwards with Him.
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