Simon said, “Master, we’ve been fishing hard all night and haven’t caught even a minnow. But if you say so, I’ll let out the nets.” It was no sooner said than done—a huge haul of fish, straining the nets past capacity. They waved to their partners in the other boat to come help them. They filled both boats, nearly swamping them with the catch. Luke 5:4-7 MSG
The fisherman that would one day be known as the Apostle Peter was coming in from a night of not catching anything when he was met with a request to go fishing AGAIN, only this time, with Jesus.
Peter politely tries to tell Jesus that the fishing is pointless because he’d just spent the entirety of the night trying, only to come up empty. No doubt Peter, the expert fisherman, was thinking, "If I’m coming up empty, what possible hope does this carpenter from Nazareth have in helping make these nets full?"
As it turns out, this particular carpenter is a master at building fulfillment. In Peter’s case, it wasn’t only that he would shortly be pulling in full nets of fish with Jesus, but soon later, found himself “fishing for men,” and finding a new life with Jesus, beyond anything he’d ever dreamed.
The point of the story, beyond Jesus demonstrating His authority and power, and beyond the call to mission that every would-be follower of Jesus is called to, is that Jesus is One who brings true fulfillment.
Jesus takes what was once empty and makes it teem with life!
Peter’s fishing nets going from empty to full is a picture of how Jesus, the great fulfiller, brings fullness in every aspect of life.
Our careers, our families, our legacies, even our personalities, are all spaces, "nets" if you will, that Jesus wants to bring fulfillment to. The question is, will we invite Him into our "boats"? Jesus wants to invade our day to day lives, our vocations, vacations, plans and purposes, every part. It is crucial we realize that before Jesus took Peter on the adventure of a lifetime, He demonstrated the fact that He is here to bring fulfillment right where we are!
Maybe the secret of fulfillment and meaning in life isn't doing something great so much as it is being with the One who is great, and that He would make everything we do infinitely valuable, infinitely meaningful, and infinitely fulfilling. Fulfillment is found with Jesus, not in what we do.
Peter made one decision that day that would change everything, not only for him but for the whole world, and with that decision, the empty was filled, disappointment became excitement, and the ordinary became extraordinary.
He let Jesus into his boat. Will you?
This week, may you look for ways to invite Jesus into every vessel of your life; Into your day, into your conversation, into your work, into your relationships, into your mind, even into your sleeping, and see that the nets that were once coming up empty aren’t bursting forth with new life!