|ps from ps
“After he rose from the dead, Jesus showed up in the upper room where the disciples were hiding, not once but at least twice, walking through locked doors and walls to get there. The disciples were amazed.
And then seven of them went back fishing.” – Biegner version of the end of John 20 and the beginning of John 21
They went back fishing.
I’m wrestling with their response. Seems like it’s one of two things:
1. They see, believe, are amazed and have had their lives changed for good and they wanted to get back into their vocation and integrate this new good news into their daily work.
2. They have the spiritual attention span of a boat oar and didn’t know quite what to do with a resurrected savior and were scared to talk with anyone about it and just wanted to retreat to a preconceived comfort zone.
Or I guess there could be a third that maybe they just really liked fishing.
I’m leaning into #2 at this point in the text because
A. They show zero reactions that these interactions with Jesus made any difference at all. And…
B. They seem to stink at fishing because they aren’t catching a thing and the carpenter/rabbi who is standing way off on the shore (maybe he’s staying that far away because he is concerned why Peter is fishing naked! John 21:7) has to direct them on where to throw their nets.
So that leaves us back at the dreaded #2.
Doing nothing. Going back to the same ol’ thing. Not letting the power of God over even death itself matter at all.
So, we are ten days post-Easter morning 2023.
What did you do?
If I had a dime for every time we said on Easter morning: “Christ is Risen. He is Risen Indeed. Alleluia!”, then I’d have a lot of dimes! But has it changed us, or did we just crawl back into our old boats?
The rest of chapter 21 tells of Jesus calling the boys to shore after they bring in a big haul of “Jesus-inspired” fish and they break bread and share a sacred meal around the fire on the beach. He keeps showing up, despite their lack of change and movement based on this newly discovered resurrection event.
He keeps showing us.
Despite the disciples underwhelming response, he keeps showing up.
My prayer for you as we continue through the church’s Easter season but move further away from Easter morning is that you (and I) lean into #1…that we let the powerful news of a resurrected Lord carry us back into our vocation and vacations and have it change every interaction we have with the world. That’s us living out our best discipleship! But I know from my own first hand boat oar-like spiritual journey, I’ve just crawled back into plenty of boats, returned to the same ol’ thing and haven’t let the good news change me.
However, whatever our response to Easter, Jesus keeps showing up. For us and despite us. To remind us 10 days out and further that the quieter, less frequent “Christ is Risen’s” are still there. Still directing our fishing. Still inviting us to a meal on the beach.
So go and fish today. But fish today as a changed disciple, listening for Jesus’ fishing tips and readying yourself to be invited over and over to a sacred meal on the beach.
And for the love of all the is good, right and proper, if you’re fishing with other people in the boat, keep your clothes on!
Lord, help me to fish differently because of Easter. Amen
Still in One Peace,