He is Risen and We’re Off Fishin’

Peter and the other disciples have spent many months traveling around with Jesus.  They have witnessed miraculous healings, food multiplication that would make a Holy Week coordinator green with envy, even people raised from the dead.  And in the previous chapter of John, Jesus appeared to them in his resurrected body.  And after all that, Peter says, “I’m going fishing.”  And his fellow disciples chime in, “Hey, we’ll go with you!”  As readers, our temptation is to respond, “Really?  This is your response to Jesus’ resurrection?”

And yet, isn’t this what we do?  We’ve traveled through Lent, experienced the emotional lows and highs of Holy Week, and rejoiced on Easter Sunday at his resurrection.  And then we fall back into our mundane way of living, just as the disciples seem to have returned to their familiar profession of fishing.

Jesus’ response to the disciples demonstrates his unflagging patience and forgiveness.  He offers them a chance to show obedience in a small matter and then rewards them with so many fish that they can’t haul the net in.  Jesus restores Peter after his denial; he feeds the disciples breakfast and renews his call to ministry.  Forgiveness, restoration, sustenance, and a call to ministry—this is what Jesus offers to all of us.

He is risen. Alleluia!

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