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September 04, 2022 · Bob Gass

Are you coming up empty?

“That night they caught nothing.” John 21:3 NKJV

When Jesus first called His disciples, He told them, “I will make you fishers of men” (Matthew 4:19). Yet 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. Now, God will use your past experiences to teach you, but He always leads you forward—never back. When fear and uncertainty make you want to go back to the security of what you know, you end up like the disciples: “That night they caught nothing.” But there is good news: if God has called you, you’re still called. Notice how Jesus addresses them: “Children, have you any food?” (John 21:5 NKJV). In spite of your lackluster performance, you’re still God’s redeemed child. Next, He 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!’” (vv. 6-7 NIV). Notice what Jesus did next. He ate breakfast with them, renewed fellowship, removed their doubts, and empowered them to change the world. There is an important lesson here. When you work outside God’s will, it’s like fishing on the wrong side of the boat; you wear yourself out and end up having little to show for your efforts. Are you failing? Maybe it’s because you’re fishing on the wrong side of the boat! Things will start to work out right when you submit to Christ, renew your fellowship with Him, and allow Him to direct you.

Bible in a year: Luke 16:16-31 and Psalm 89-90

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