Right in the middle of a long, hard day…
Tired and discouraged, a man wipes the sweat from his brow. It’s been a day of frustration and the hard work of doing the same mundane task over and over. Today there is nothing to show for it.
How do we find simple encouragement when our work fails?
Now it happened that while the crowd was pressing around Him and listening to the word of God, He was standing by the lake of Gennesaret; and He saw two boats lying at the edge of the lake; but the fishermen had gotten out of them and were washing their nets. Luke 5:1-2
How do we find encouragement when we’ve worked hard and our nets are empty?
We’ve all had a day like this. Maybe your whole week has been like this and you’re tired of it. Sometimes the weariness goes deeper when you’ve cast months or years of effort into something, hoping to pull in the catch of your dreams.
At the end of the day are you muttering, “All this work for nothing? What’s the point?”
- It’s easy to get discouraged when hard work seems to have no result.
Empty-handed, Simon has nothing to show for his labor. Jesus approaches right in the midst of his weariness. Coming closer, Jesus gets into his boat, choosing the exact moment to enter into Simon’s situation.
And He got into one of the boats, which was Simon’s, and asked him to put out a little way from the land. And He sat down and began teaching the people from the boat. Luke 5:3
It’s no accident that Jesus gets into Simon ‘s boat, and it is never a coincidence when Jesus works in the middle of our circumstances as well. He is in it with us–He’s in our boat in the middle of our failures and our weariness. He is present in our challenges and in the nitty-gritty efforts of daily work.
Willingly, Simon makes his resources available, giving Christ the use of his boat.
- Jesus wants to use our resources to accomplish His work.
- We can never give more to Jesus than He will give to us (David Guzik).
At first, Simon is merely a vehicle for what Jesus is doing–there doesn’t appear to be any personal meaning in the interaction. Notice that Jesus involves Simon in what He is doing, even in this simple act of service. Let’s face it, rowing a boat is not glamorous work.
How do we enter into the truth of this story that happened so long ago? Where is the overlap between empty nets and the work in our own lives?
What truth is here for you today?
Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men… Colossians 2:23
The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, To all who call upon Him in truth. Psalm 145:18
And besides You, I desire nothing on earth.
My flesh and my heart may fail,
But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
But as for me, the nearness of God is my good… Psalm 73:25-26, 28
More than a story.
Take a few moments and allow the Holy Spirit to show you the truth that can fill your empty net today. Invite Christ into your work, your family, your life, and especially into your failures.