Marci Lewellen has an interesting retelling of Luke 5:1-11.  In her paraphrase, Jesus is being crowded into the water when he sees Simon cleaning his nets, and asks to borrow the boat.  “Sure, why not? Old thing is not doing me any good today.”

Simon went back to what he was already doing, and tried hard not to listen to what Jesus was saying, even though his heart burned when he “overheard” the sermon.

Then the sermon was over, and Jesus offered to pay for use of the boat.  He told Simon to push out again into the deep water and that there would be fish waiting for him there.

Quoting the Marci Creative Version (MCV):

Jesus said this so matter of fact that Simon, was at first startled and confused, then angry at such arrogance… Wasn’t this guy a carpenter’s son? What did he know about fishing. Simon had been fishing since He could walk. No, even since before he could walk his dad had taken him out into the deep waters to fish… “Who was this guy?” Simon thought to himself.

Simon, tried to stifle his anger but remain authoritative,
“Teacher, we have worked all night and we didn’t catch anything.”

Jesus locked Simon’s gaze and held it. Only seconds went by but it felt like minutes for Simon.

You know the end of the story.  They caught more than they could handle, more than they could imagine.  And here’s where I feel a sermon coming on…

1.  When Jesus asks for our help, we are rewarded beyond our expectations.  When we built a new church building, my pastor (I was Deacon Chairman and on the building committee) kept a sign next to his desk: “What God ordains, he will fund.”  It was a “faith-building” experience, but it is now a center of missional activity in the town.

2.  Don’t ignore the prompting of the Spirit.  Simon almost missed the blessing by ignoring the awareness of the Spirit.

3.   Just because the experts say something different, when God directs us to do something unusual, we ought to at least consider it.  We think we know how things ought to be, and want to tell Jesus how things ought to be done.  If it’s the voice of Jesus, just do it!

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