Leave it to God

‘[Jesus] said to Simon, “Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch”   But Simon answered and said to Him, “Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net.”  And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish, and their net was breaking.”
Luke 5:4-6

Sometimes we try and try and try to do things on our own, and they just don’t work. We try to be a good parent, or a good friend, or a good spouse, yet we fail again and again. We lose our temper, break a trust, or act in selfishness and pride. When I read this passage in Luke today it reminded me that we are nothing on our own strength – but everything with God.

Would you go back out in the boat?

I love the total faith and obedience Simon Peter shows in his response to Jesus’ command to go back out fishing. Although he acknowledges that he had already tried this on his own, he doesn’t hesitate to go and try again. I think my response would have been more along the lines of, “You’ve got to be kidding?! Don’t you know I’ve been trying this ALL NIGHT LONG, and there’s not a fish there! It’s not going to be any different this time. I might as well give up.” Certainly, this is how I’ve felt at times in my life.

Now, I’m not a fishing person (worms? raw fish with the eyes still in? EW!) But I have my own ‘fish’ to catch. I’m trying to get a firm hold of patience, and wisdom, and peace, and righteousness. And too many times I go fishing on my own, exhausting myself in a futile attempt to catch them by myself, believing that if I just try harder I will do it this time.

To make it more practical (since I’m a girl after my Dad’s own heart), here are some areas that I find myself slipping out of God’s strength and into my own:

  • Teaching my children to love the Lord.
  • Figuring out financial problems.
  • Trying to keep my family healthy.
  • Inspiring people close to me to love God deeply and follow Him sincerely.
  • Dealing with sin in my own life.
  • Educating my children.
  • Showing my husband support and encouragement.

Whilst there is no ‘three step plan to relying on God’, there are some things I have found that make it easier for me to remember to draw strength from Him:

  • Read the Bible regularly.  However, don’t let this become another check box on your list of things to do. Rather let it come from a heart that earnestly desires to know God more.
  • Pray with passion.  It’s easy to quickly pray before meals, before bed, or at church. This is all good, but it is no substitute for prayer that comes from deep in your heart. Pour yourself out to God.
  • Relax.  When we try to work things out for ourselves, we get stressed, fatigued and burnt out. We need to take a deep breath and look to the example of Jesus, who loved to the point of death because He relied on God. When we take the pressure off of ourselves and turn our face to Him, we find a new strength, an endless hope, and a joy to see us through.

Praise God for His faithfulness. When we offer Him the little we have, He gives us the same power that can raise the dead back to life! With Him, all things truly are possible.


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