September 7, 2017

Apprentices of Jesus

Written by Tripp Prince

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – September 7, 2017

By Tripp Prince

When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into the deep water and let down your nets for a catch.” Simon answered, “Master, we have worked all night long but have caught nothing. Yet if you say so, I will let down the nets.” When they had done this, they caught so many fish that their nets were beginning to break. Luke 5:4-6 (NRSV)

What is your expertise? What skill have you obtained over years of faithful study, practice, and discipline? For many of us, this may be a life-long pursuit, such as a career in the financial industry, certification as a master gardener, or learning a foreign language. Whatever it is, the more you know, the more you are inclined to view yourself as an expert and authority on the topic. For many of the first disciples, their expertise was fishing.

Simon had given his life to mastering the craft of fishing. As an apprentice he would have spent countless hours on a boat, learning the rhythms of the water and the skills of fishing from a master fisherman, refining the process to a fine science. When he says, “Master, we have worked all night long but have caught nothing,” he is, in essence, saying, “trust me when I say, there are no fish.” He’s the expert and years of training and experience tell him it simply isn’t a good night to catch fish! And yet, Simon’s trust in God is greater than his trust in his own knowledge, and so against his better judgment, he lets down his nets.

There is a profound lesson for us in this story. Are you willing to accept the limitations of your knowledge? Even with all of your expertise and training, are you able to lay it down before the Lord and trust that he knows more? True trust in God begins by acknowledging that there is a limit to your knowledge. No matter how much you know, God knows more. As such, there will be times that his guidance in our lives requires us to humble ourselves under his mighty hand (1 Peter 5:6).

You and I never graduate from the Jesus school of discipleship. There is never a point at which our knowledge becomes so great that we can trust it blindly or completely. We must always retain the posture of an apprentice. We are invited to follow and to learn from Jesus our master. And as there is no end to his wisdom, knowledge, or love, so too is there never an end to our growth. When we accept this, we cultivate a posture of receptivity. We live lives that are consistently open to the guidance and direction of the Lord. As we do this, no matter how great our knowledge or wisdom may be, when the Lord speaks to us, we are able to join our lives with Simon and say, “If you say so, I will let down the nets.”



Father, deepen our trust and our faith in you, that we may follow you as faithful apprentices all of our days.


Are there areas of your life that you have blindly trusted in your own skill and expertise instead of following the lead of the Lord?

Related Reading

John 12:26; Ephesians 5:1; 1 Peter 2:21

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