Summary: Christ calls us out of our comfort zone to serve. It takes a deepening faith to hear His calling and obedient. Our faithfulness to Him glorifies the Kingdom and brings others to a deepening of thier faith.
Living to serve wholeheartedly
Reverend Daniel A. Wheat
Introduction: Has anyone ever told a fish story before? Well, I was stationed in Alaska where I had the opportunity of a lifetime to fish for Alaska King Salmon. And let me tell you they get B-I-G! In fact I caught one King Salmon that was this (stretching arms out fully) big….ok my wife says I should be honest with you folks. It was really this big (stretching arms out even farther). Just kidding. I want to talk with you about another fisherman I know named Peter. He was what you would call a fisherman extraordinaire. As with all fishermen when we cannot seem to catch any we never assume it is operator error.
Now there is something happening in this passage that should be mentioned. Peter had been a fisherman for many years. In fact when it comes right down to it he had probably become quite good at it since his life depended on it. Now ask yourself this question, “How is some guy from nowhere going to tell a master fisherman how to fish?”
Let’s look at this for a moment. Look who the counsel is coming from. Jesus. If you were Peter how would you react? How do we react in our spiritual lives when the Lord asks us or even commands us to do something? Often the Lord speaks to us to go and speak with someone we don’t want to. He commands us to step out in faith and tithe to the church and we don’t want to. He continues everyday to guide us in things and do we listen? Often not. Why should we listen to Him speak to us? Because he is Jesus the Lord. His authority comes from on high.
Let us see how Peter reacts to the command of Jesus.
Peter says yes Lord. But why? Think back for a moment when you first said yes Lord wash my sins away. What did it take for you to get to that point to say yes Lord? It all came down to accepting His authority, dominion over your life and the faith to accept responsibility to obey. Isn’t that what Peter did? He accepted Christ as the authority and had the faith to accept the responsibility that He was in control. We must do that also. We all have made a choice to accept Christ as our Savior and yet many of us neglect to continue to listen to Him in our lives. When we accept Christ as our Savior, Teacher, and Authority we can travel to the deep water. But we are not alone. He is with us.
Lets move on and see what happens when Peter places his trust in Jesus.
There was such a large number of fish that the load began to break the net. In fact there were so many that they called a second boat to retrieve the fish. Amazing. So, what happens when we place our faith in the obedience of Christ when He calls to us? Abundance. Abundance overflowing! Peter recognized His calling to go to the deeper water and took in the splendor of the blessing that awaited him there in the deep water.
You know I spoke of my time in Alaska but let me tell you the rest of the story. While I was there I had an opportunity to do some dip netting one weekend with two church friends. The first day we were there we went around the edges of the river and caught absolutely nothing. The next morning my friend and I decided we would go out to the middle of the river and search the deep water. In one hour we had both caught our limits on both Red and King Salmon. We had filed five large onion bags with fish and could not believe it. It was only after going into the deep water where the big fish were that we caught anything.