Aspiration without inspiration leads to frustration and desperation.
John 21:3 – Simon Peter saith unto them, I go a fishing. They say unto him, We also go with thee. They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing.
When what we aspire to do, especially when our aspirations are great, seems to be failing, the great tendency of man is to return to the familiar. That is precisely what Peter did after the crucifixion of Jesus. And interestingly, his decision to go fishing was even after Jesus’ resurrection; after Peter had seen Him alive. Perhaps like so many of us, when our aspirations seem to be failing, or possibly just coming along too slowly, not happening as quickly as we thought they should, or in the manner we thought they should, Peter chose fishing over waiting on the Lord.
But let us not isolate Peter as the only one with failed aspirations. He had a lot of company when he went fishing. And think about who they were; Nathaniel, Thomas (who had put his fingers in the holes in Jesus’ body), James and John, and two other disciples (not named). That is a total of seven disciples who went fishing. Peter, James, and John were all professional fishermen; partners, in fact, in the fishing industry on the Sea of Galilee. Though their success on two occasions would not indicate it, in truth, they were experts in their field, knowledgeable of their industry, and comfortable with those surroundings. And it all points to what I shared earlier. When that great aspiration does not seem to be bringing about desired results, it is so easy for one to fall back on the familiar elements of life, especially those with which one is comfortable.
Now think of this. When healing seems to be slow in coming, when the salvation of a loved one seems to be slow in happening, when the needed financial blessing seems to be overly delayed in its arrival, how easy is it for the Christian to fall back on natural means. Taking a pain reliever is no indication that one has stopped believing in divine healing. Attempting to apply gentle force to move a loved one to come to Jesus does not mean one does not believe that the Word of God works. Going to a banker does not mean one has stopped believing in God’s ability to provide. All these simply mean that the Christian is not content with what appears to be happening; that the believer is under greater influence from circum-stances than they would like to admit. It is, in fact, a symptom of double-mindedness, and it DOES ultimately work against our faith.
But rejoice, my friend, for even when you’ve gone fishing, and like Peter and his friends, gained nothing, Jesus knows precisely where you are. He knows how to find you, show you what you need to change or correct, and walk you through the process to put you back on track to your aspirations/dreams. So, if you’re fishing today, keep your eyes on the shoreline. Someone who loves you supremely may be walking there for you right now.
Manna for Today – John 21:1-14; Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-20; Matthew 4:19; Mark 1:17