The disciples—or, for now, the fishermen—had worked through the night but caught nothing. Jesus waited ashore and spoke, possibly making the apparent disaster of the disciples worse. He advised them on a better fishing technique. Remember, they’d been there a while. They’d tried it all and they had been fishermen for years. They probably didn’t want an outsider’s advice.
Jesus told them to try the right side. They proceeded without hesitation. They still did not know the Lord’s identity, but maybe eager Peter learned a lesson the first time Jesus directed them to a large catch. Maybe he figured it was worth a shot. So, they lowered their net, following the Stranger’s guidelines. The shifted net suddenly filled with fish.
They could not bring in the net because of captured quantity. They didn’t need to make up a story about a miracle at sea. What a great illustration of Christ’s power, His wisdom, His guidance, His awareness. Utilizing years of education and experience, the efforts of men brought nothing. When their work followed the advice of Jesus, success was immediate.
I often see how we abandon our ideals and return to the roles we are most comfortable with. The preaching, healing, and traveling may have seemed too much for the less-than-perfect disciples. Fishing posed no problems. They knew technique; they felt confident about their abilities.
Can’t we all relate?