I love this passage because while it provides many layers of fruitful thought, it offers a simple message: God is always calling us to go deeper. Deeper in prayer, deeper in dependence, deeper in faith, in generosity, in boldness.
Jesus asks us to launch out into the deep! Because spiritual leadership will never thrive in the shallows. A life going deeper with Jesus requires courage, vulnerability, confession, repentance, dedication to living in a community.
But the reward is worth it.
I don’t know about you, but I can relate. For years I felt God calling me to something, to take my life in a certain direction, but I kept choosing to go my own way. From an early age I felt called to help others, but every chance God gave me to launch out into the deep waters, I followed my own ideas and stayed in the shallows with a whole lot of nothing. This led me to my addiction.
It was only when I decided to trust Jesus in the deep end that I began to see the radical life change that has powered me through the past ten years.
Before, I was a lot like Simon in this passage: I’d been fishing all night and had nothing to show for it. No catch, no conquering, no victories. I felt like Simon’s nets: empty.
Simon had been fishing in the places and spaces he thought were best suited for a catch. He’d done what he’d always done: hung out at night in the shallow waters, but it was all for nothing.
You aren’t going to get anything staying in the dark, safe places. Why? Because you’ve been called out of darkness, rescued from the pit of hell, saved to save others…
That’s your calling. What are you doing with it?