In the Right Place

After these things Jesus showed Himself again to the disciples at the Sea of Tiberias, and in this way He showed Himself: Simon Peter, Thomas called the Twin, Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two others of His disciples were together. 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. – John 21:1-3.

Can you imagine being an elementary student on a school bus and after a turn the driver falls out of her seat and hits her head? The school bus is then driverless and out of control! Every kid on the bus was probably screaming. It happened on a school bus in California and could have been very tragic if not for a 15-year-old girl who would not normally have been on the bus. Amanda Rouse, the 15-year-old, jumped into the driver’s seat and hit the brakes stopping the bus. The bus did hit a couple of parked cars but thankfully no one was injured other than the driver who had hit her head. Amanda had been feeling sick and asked the driver to take her home. Since she had not received the proper permission to leave school Amanda was rewarded with detention on Saturday. Amanda’s grandmother said about the situation, “I can’t help but believe that she (Amanda) was where God wanted her to be.”

It is a wonderful thing when you know that you are in the right place at the right time. Amanda, in spite of receiving detention for her heroics, knows that she at least at that one moment in time was exactly where she was meant to be.

Sadly, Peter and six other disciples were not in the right place at the right time. Peter had apparently decided that it was over, Jesus was dead, and he might as well go back to his old career of being a fisherman. Six other disciples followed Peter. Jesus did not call them to catch fish as He said to four of them in Matthew 4:19, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Jesus had called them to win souls for the Kingdom of God and He had not changed His mind. The result of they’re being in the wrong place at the wrong time was that they caught no fish.

Peter and his friends had begun to look back to the good old days of when they were fishermen. Those days were not complicated and the only uncertainty was whether you would have a good catch or a bad catch of fish. Sometimes the weather would be good and sometimes the weather would be bad. However, you did not have to worry about Roman soldiers crucifying you for fishing!

In John 21:4 the next morning the risen Lord Jesus comes to find them and reissues His call upon their lives. Jesus addresses some questions that were apparently on the heart of Peter and his friends. They are questions that often loom in the hearts of those serving the Lord. One of those questions is about what reward is there in that service. After demonstrating that He is Lord and the disciples haul in a huge catch of fish; Jesus says to Peter, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me more than these?” Jesus was speaking of the fish that had just been caught and that they had eaten for breakfast. It is a decision that must be made in following Jesus. Do we love Him or do we love the world?

Peter had one more question that often is a question that hinders servants of the Lord. “Then Peter, turning around, saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following, who also had leaned on His breast at the supper, and said, “Lord, who is the one who betrays You?” Peter, seeing him, said to Jesus, “But Lord, what about this man?” Jesus said to him, “If I will that he remain till I come, what is that to you? You follow Me (John 21:20-22).” You must not compare yourself to others or worry about how God is working in the lives of others in comparison to how He is working in your life. Jesus had a plan for Peter and He had a plan for John. Peter and John followed the Lord. He has a plan for your life too. Will you follow Him?

You can be in the right place at the right time by fearlessly following your Lord, putting Him first in your life above the treasures of this world, and by praising God for how He works in the lives of others instead of being jealous.

(There is a right place to be in the will of the Lord and a right time to be there.)

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