“Launch out into the deep.” Lk 5:4 NKJV
The disciples fished all night and caught nothing. Then Jesus said, “‘Launch out into the deep and let down your nets’…And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish” (Lk 5:4, 6 NKJV). Notice three things here: (1) Working harder isn’t necessarily the answer. The disciples “toiled all night” (v. 5). Nobody could have questioned their work ethic. But when you fish in water that’s too shallow, no amount of effort will bring results. (2) You need to obey God even when you don’t understand His plan. Peter, a seasoned fisherman, had to set aside his pride and say, “Nevertheless at Your word I will…” (v. 5). In 2 Kings chapter 5, Naaman had to humble himself and bathe in the Jordan in order to be healed of leprosy. In Gethsemane Jesus displayed the same attitude when He prayed, “Not my will, but yours be done” (Lk 22:42 NIV). (3) Going deeper always works. Jesus said two men built houses, but only one house survived the storm because the builder “dug…deep and laid the foundation on rock” (Lk 6:48 NIV). Author Phil Yancey’s former pastor said he sometimes felt like an old hand-operated pump. “Everyone who came along would reach up and pump vigorously a few times, and each time he felt something drain out of him. Finally, he had nothing more to give. At a ministry retreat he expressed his thoughts to a very wise nun, expecting her to offer soothing words about what a wonderful sacrificial person he was. Instead she gave him some great advice: ‘There’s only one thing to do when your reservoir is dry. Go deeper!’” And that’s the word for you today!