As I walked along the beach this morning, a story from the gospel of John came to mind.
It’s in the very last chapter and takes place after Jesus’ resurrection. The disciples had seen Jesus alive again, however, at least according to John’s account he hadn’t given them any direction about what’s next. It seemed that Peter couldn’t handle the sitting around waiting one day and finally defaulted back to the one thing he knew well, and that probably brought him comfort. “I’m going fishing.” Many of the others joined them.
All night long the fished and fished and fished… Nothing. The passage doesn’t tell us but I wonder what they thought and said…
“Maybe we just need to get back into the hang of it… You know it has been a few years… Is something wrong with these nets… Surely we can’t be this out of practice, it’s not that difficult.”
As dawn approached, so did a figure on the shore…
Encouraging them to try once again on the other side of the boat, fish started coming in in numbers that blew their minds. Suddenly they knew…
It was Jesus.
Peter jumps in the water, despite the fact that they were close to shore… He can’t wait one more second to be with Jesus. As the other disciples trail in the boat with an incredible catch of fish Jesus invites them to a nearby fire and says, “Come and have breakfast.”
A simple invitation, but probably a welcome one for the disciples. Hungry and tired from a long night of until then unproductive fishing, perhaps a few moments of normality with their friend and Lord Jesus.
I think sometimes I expect God to show up in my life and the lives of people around me on huge miraculous ways… And sometimes he does. But it’s helpful to remember that more often, his invitations come more like breakfast on the beach.