S92P4 – God’s miraculous provision: the full fishing net

John 21:3-6

Simon Peter said to them, “I am going fishing.” They said to him, “We are going with you also.” They went out and immediately got into the boat, and that night they caught nothing. But when the morning had now come, Jesus stood on the shore; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus. Then Jesus said to them, “Children, have you any food?” They answered Him, “No.” And He said to them, “Cast the net on the right side of the boat, and you will find some. ” So they cast, and now they were not able to draw it in because of the multitude of fish.

I had put myself in a rather interesting position, and my faith was beginning to dwindle.  I had not been saved more than a year or two when I was challenged to pledge a large sum of money to a ministry in faith.  I responded to the challenge by agreeing to donate what was requested for the next year.  As that year progressed, money started to get really tight.  One unexpected emergency after another came up.  As the bills mounted, I began to wonder whether my pledge had been a foolish decision.  Once that year came to a close and I had fulfilled my pledge, a strange thing happened.  I arrived home one evening worried and despondent only to find an envelope slipped under my door containing the exact amount of money I had pledged that year.

When Jesus appeared to his disciples in this instance, he showed up by first performing a miracle to let them know who He was.  Their attempt at fishing had been unsuccessful, and scripture does not tell us whether these disciples cried out in prayer for sustenance.  All we know is that Jesus showed up after He had died, and He brought with him the miracle of provision.  It certainly is possible that the disciples were not actually on the verge of starvation to the point of death, and that they could have survived without that net full of fish, but Jesus made sure to provide that food in an effort to reinforce that He was still with them.  It was not until that miracle that they recognized that the man with whom they were speaking was the Lord.

This miracle of Jesus was not about food but about his presence.  The envelope which somehow made its way under my apartment door was not about money but also was about God’s presence.  I only received back what I had given that previous year.  My giving created a lack which God then filled, but I really only broke even.  It is not as if riches poured out from heaven.  This was never about the money; that was a tool.  I believe it was a test for me to take a step in faith and trust that God would let me know that He was there in the midst of it all.  God can show up in a fishing net or in an envelope, but the point is that He is there.  Father, thank You for the miracles of provision that let us know You are there in it all, always watching and keeping us.