Text: John 21:1-14
Jesus guides us in many different ways. Sometimes He makes the next step clear as day. Other times, like Peter in the text we have read, it feels like we’re left to muddle through, only to find that Jesus was leading through our muddling.
Peter didn’t know what else to do. The past few weeks had been indescribably intense with the nightmare of Jesus’ crucifixion and the overwhelming wonder of His resurrection. Now he finds himself sitting with Thomas, Nathanael, James, John and two others. They were just waiting. It was disorienting and uncertain. Jesus wasn’t there and he hadn’t told them what to do next
Peter used to know just what to do: prepare the nets and boat, go fishing, take what he caught and sell it in the market. Fishing was hard and sometimes dangerous work. But Peter knew what was expected of him. The memory of the familiar was comforting.
Sometimes standing still is just not an option you may feel feel impressed, even pushed to go forward, but which direction to take – that is the question. None of us want to miss the will of God and go off in the wrong direction. We all want to stay right in the centre of God’s will. The problem we encounter is that we often don’t know exactly where that centre is. We can see that God is leading us. We know that He is taking us somewhere.But, in our confusion, we can’t see where to go because of the fog of doubt and challenges that surround us.
We are convinced, like King David was in Psalm 18:36 when he said, You gave a wide place for my steps under me and my feet did not slip.
We hear the words of Job as he speaks to his friends in Job 31:4, Does not he see my ways and number all my steps?
The good thing is that, even if we do take a wrong step, God takes those opportunities to test our faith and trust in Him remember the rest of Psalms 37:24… for the Lord upholds his hand (speaking of the one who falls) As long as Peter didn’t know what else to do, he reasoned that he might as well do something productive. The others replied, “We will go with you.” Peter wasn’t the only restless one. If you are feeling restless and uncertain you are not alone in this time.
When they got to shore, they found Jesus preparing breakfast for them. He already had fish! Graciously, and perhaps with a tease of affection, He said, “Bring some of the fish that you have just caught.” Then he served them breakfast. And then Jesus gave Peter the next instructions.
Four Principles in This Account
1. waiting on Jesus is a common experience for disciples. Sometimes we wait for direction.
2., when we’re not sure what to do next, … “do the next thing.
3. Jesus is in complete control. Peter and his friends were experienced fishermen. They did their best, yet caught nothing.
4. Jesus’ is always serving us, even when we can’t see it. He serves us in every conceivable way: from the payment of our sins, to our call, to the fish we catch, to a breakfast on the beach, to our eternal home.
Jesus loves to work for those who wait for Him Isaiah 64:4 From of old no one has heard or perceived by the ear, no eye has seen a God besides you, who acts for those who wait for him.
In following Jesus there are seasons of bewildering intensity and seasons of bewildering waiting.
He does not want us to panic during either. He is in control of both. When we don’t understand His ways, trust his Word.
Psalms 85:13 says, Righteousness will go before Him and make His footsteps a way.
Jesus, is our Righteousness and His will for us is to live in His Righteousness. He knows our beginning from our end.
He knows where we are going and He has already cleared the path for our steps to be secure. He shall set us on the right path and He will never let us go astray.
And like Peter, when we’re not sure what to do next, do the next thing.