Far from the fairytale version we have of Jesus’ followers after Easter and Jesus’ resurrection… you know, the version in which everyone immediately becomes convinced that God has indeed changed the world and they must go out in the power of their faith and proclaim the truth of Jesus raised… instead, we have the record from Scripture (John 21) which is far less glamorous:
Simon Peter said to them, “I am going fishing.” They said to him, “We will go with you.” They went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing. Just after daybreak, Jesus stood on the beach; but the disciples did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to them, “Children, you have no fish, have you?” They answered him, “No.” He said to them, “Cast the net to the right side of the boat, and you will find some.” So they cast it, and now they were not able to haul it in because there were so many fish. (John 21:3-6)
Peter and the others went fishing! They went back to the ‘same as usual’ life they had left when Jesus had first called them. But, they were soon to realize that you can’t go back to the ‘same as usual’ life. Sure, the story unfolds and we find that they catch a lot of fish… but Jesus is there on the shore making this happen… and NOT because he wants them to be successful in their ‘same as usual’ life of fishing. No, Jesus is trying to get their attention for yet another moment of growth and revelation. (stay tuned for tomorrow’s reflection to learn more about that moment).
For today, the simple reflection is this: when our faith is kick-started by Jesus… nothing can ever be ‘the same as usual’. The normal rules don’t apply. A ‘good catch’ of fish (like any success in life) or a ‘bad turn’ (like any trouble in life) no longer define our lives or the purpose of our lives. Instead, they are markers, signs, and moments of growth that point to a much more important life:
The life of faith.
Are you settling for ‘the same as usual’?