Here's verses 3-4 to help set the scene:
Simon Peter said to them, "I am going fishing. They said to him, "We will also come with you." They went out and got into the boat; and that night they caught nothing. But when the day was now breaking, Jesus stood on the beach; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus.What caught my attention was found in verses 5-6:
So Jesus said to them, "Children, you do not have any fish do you?" They answered Him, "No." And He said to them, "Cast the net on the right-hand side of the boat and you will find a catch." So they cast, and then they were not able to haul it in because of the great number of fish.Now, the rest of the chapter has a lot of other great stuff too, but this is where I stopped. The thought that popped in my head as I read this was, "Where should I be casting my net?"
If I cast it somewhere other than where Jesus tells me to, I will obviously not have a very successful catch. But I have the potential to catch a "great number of fish" if only I would listen and cast it where He tells me to. So, the questions has to be asked, "Hey Jesus, where am I suppose to be casting my net?"
I should probably clarify at this point that I'm not really talking about fishing. I'm talking about fruitful living. I'm talking about living the life that Jesus asks me to live—abiding in Him and bearing fruit for His kingdom!
Sometimes I feel a little like the disciples in the boat after a long night of empty-net fishing. I'm tired, discouraged, hungry, and maybe a little hopeless. I don't know what to do next. I'm here, I'm ready, and I'm waiting for that next step to be revealed. I'm clueless.
It's interesting that the disciples were so close to the abundant catch Jesus had for them. They were just on the wrong side of the boat! What is that, like maybe ten feet off? Apparently, ten feet makes a huge difference in fishing . . . a difference of about 153 fish. (NOTE: I have no idea how wide the boat was.)
But the real difference was heeding the voice of Jesus. They had been doing it all on their own. They were stuck and ready to give up. They had produced no "fruit" for their efforts. But when they heard Jesus' voice and followed His direction it changed the outcome of that fishing trip completely!
I desire nothing more than to follow my Lord whole-heartedly. And part of following Him is waiting. His timing, His plan, and His ways are perfect. But today, I can't help asking, "Jesus, where do you want me to cast my net? What do you want me to do? Where do you want me to invest my time, energy, talents and money? What fruit am I to bear?"