Warm Up: 2 Corinthians 5:17, Therefore, if anyone is in Christ he is a new creation; the old has gone and the new has come.
Stretching: Read Luke 5:1-11.
Run: Nothing changes when nothing changes. That was something running through my mind the other day when I was in circuit class. “Circuit” is an group exercise class that alternates activities between weight training and aerobic step exercises. I had hurt a rotator cuff in my shoulder pitching fast balls to my son’s Little League team over the summer. So I laid off upper body weight training for awhile and was just about a month back into my training. Still, I felt like I needed to increase some of the weights, but was comfortable where I was, perhaps feeling justified in light of my recent experience. Although care must be taken when recovering from injuries, generally stagnation is death. Just about the time you get comfortable at a level of your training, you’re justabout ready to start the process of atrophy. Merriam-Webster’s On-line Dictionary defines atrophy as “A wasting away or progressive decline.” It’s never static. You are growing or you are in decline. It’s quite a quandary. In today’s story, Peter has been taken captive on his own boat while a religious man, a friend of Andrew’s, talks to a large gathering about spiritual gibberish. I like to think Peter’s thoughts were far from the meanderings of this crazed man. He was mostly fuming about missing sleep or how he ever got himself into this mess. Just about the time that he’s considering jumping overboard and swimming to shore, Jesus wraps things up. As Peter is pulling in the anchor, Jesus says, “Let’s go fishing.” Hmmm. We rarely consider the context which words are spoken in the Bible. I like to think that Peter’s response is set in sarcasm and angst. “"Master, we've worked hard all night and haven't caught anything. But because you say so (overly dramatic sigh) I will let down the nets." (The parenthetical language was added for dramatic emphasis!) The subtext here might be something like, “Are you kidding me? Did you notice there’s no one else fishing now? There’s a reason for that. Fish don’t bite this time of day. They’re sleeping; like I should be doing. And what is it you do for a living? I’m sure it’s not fishing or you would know these things. Why don’t you stick to whatever is you do and stay out of my business.” This response can be subsequently translated into the famous last seven words of the church: ‘But we’ve always done it this way.” Someone once defined insanity as doing the same thing 1,000 times and expecting a different outcome. Anything that is stagnant is actually dying. Do you want something to change in your life? Then change something. When I left home for the first time to go into the Army, it produced the greatest change in my life. Somewhere, I found this simple proverb about change that I posted on my refrigerator and read it every morning: “Change is indeed painful, yet always necessary.” That seemed obvious, but it reminded me that change isn’t easy; just important.
Cool Down: “Lord, search me and show me an area of my faith that is stagnant. I want my walk to reflect my talk and my hypocrisy is weakening my witness. Soften my heart so that I can see what you’re trying to change in me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”