Scripture: Luke 5:1-11
Key verses: (4-5) “’Put out into the deep water and let down your nets for a catch.’ Simon answered, ‘Master, we have worked all night long but have caught nothing. Yet if you say so, I will let down the nets.’”
Reflection: It is credited to Albert Einstein that the definition of insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” I’m sure we’ve all encountered this saying before, and I’m even more sure that we’ve all experienced the saying in our lives. Through experience we know what works, we know what doesn’t work. In many ways we are experts on our lives, in our work places, and in our families. We know how co-workers will react to a proposal, what meals will be eaten and which will be less popular among family. We have been around, we know what works and what doesn’t.
In our passage today, Simon was asked to something he probably would have classified as insanity, putting out nets after catching nothing all day. Simon was the expert, he just experienced a day of catching nothing, and yet Jesus asked him to put down his nets one more time. A reasonable person would have said no, a sane person would have declined the advice, and yet Simon says, “If you say so, I will let down the nets.” After letting the nets down, I wonder if Simon was waiting to say, “I told you so Jesus, I knew this wouldn’t work!” But before those words could get out of his mouth, I imagine the boat jerked to one side, almost throwing Simon into the water as the catch of fish caused the boat to begin to sink.
It is interesting to me the fine line here between insanity and faithfulness. I wonder how many times in our lives we think we know the outcome of an event or conversation, trusting more on past experiences rather than being open to the possibility of Jesus’ work in the future. Can we risk being a little insane for the sake of faithfulness? Where might God be calling you to try something again in faith that failed before? May we hold fast to faith, trusting that God can and will surprise us in our lives!
Prayer: Faithful God, we come to you with expectations of what will be. By your Spirit rock our boats, shake up our assumptions, open our hearts to your future, and empower us to take faithful risks following you. Amen.
Author: John Magnuson
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].