Experiencing 11th Hour Miracle In The 11th Month
Moving from frustration to fulfillment through an Attitude of Gratitude
Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets for a catch. When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. (Luke 5: 1-11)
The truth about life is you were born not for yourself but for God’s pleasure (Rev. 4:11). You have the option of living all alone for yourself or burning all your life for God. The former leads to frustrations but the later produces fulfillment. Unfortunately, everybody in life is seeking for fulfillment. But not everybody has discovered the secrets of living a life that is robust and fulfilling.
Sometimes we erroneously believe that having enough money or material things of this world will give us all the satisfaction we long for. So we go for all that will give us the bounty of life and we do that sometimes at the expense of some very important virtues of life. When this is not forthcoming a lot of us get discouraged and quickly get set to pack it up. This may be so for some of you especially as you consider the fact that the year is going to an end and all your aspirations and plans are far from being realized. “This is the eleventh month,” you say, yet you seem not to have experienced “big” miracle that may call for gratitude to God from you. The truth is God can still bring about what I called 11th-hour miracle on your behalf
Peter is one person in the Bible who experienced this kind of miracle. He was a professional fisherman. He went out for fishing with all his expertise in the fishing industry with the hope of getting enough fish probably for his household consumption but I think largely, for commercial purpose. Actually, everyone looks forward to making a measure of profit in every venture in life. When this is not happening, frustration and disillusion will usually be the perpetual ally. Are you also under disillusion? Are you about packing it up and giving in to fate and game of chance? The good news is that you have a glorious future and the devil is also aware of that. The fact is it is not over yet until it is over. Peter actually gave up but there was a timely intervention for him. I believe God’s intervention is still potent even within the few weeks we have before the year enters the annals of history.
When I look critically at our passage I saw some critical biblical principles and insights that were at play that brought Peter from the valley of disappointment to the height of fulfillment. Peter bounced back to life and excitement within one night. So it is possible for one to have a change of story from ugliness to beauty; from grass to grace; from ghetto to glory. Yes! It is possible to still give thanks even in the face of the disillusioned situation. It happened for Peter. Definitely, it can happen to you.
WHAT PETER DID NOT KNOW ABOUT GOD
Your perspective about God determines to a large extent how you view life and your situation. The truth is that those who know their God always remain strong and do exploit. The knowledge of God is your guarantee for victory in life in times of down moment. Unfortunately, Peter went about his business with a poor knowledge of God. A critical survey of that passage reveals Peter’s ignorance of God.
- He was ignorant of God’s omniscience
God is all-knowing. He knows the end right from its very beginning. He is called the Alpha and the Omega. He knows your uprising and down sitting. Before a word is on your tongue God knows it completely. Definitely, God was aware before time that Peter would be frustrated before he ever got to the sea that day. God was also aware of the location of fish within the sea. He simply told Peter, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” That statement surely depicted the depth of God’s knowledge. God has answers to every life challenges. All Peter needed to do was to simply cling to God to intervene in his situation but he trusted his wisdom and he failed. In the same manner, God knows everything about you and all he wanted to do in your life in 2011 before the start of the year. So, you need to know that He knows all about your situations.
- He was ignorant of God’s Omnipotence
God is all-powerful. There is no end to his strength. The heavens of the heavens belong to Him. He controls the sea and the depth of the earth. Every creature on earth responds to his biding. At the breath of His nostrils the mountain melts. At His command, the red sea parted into two and Jordan gave way. He has absolute control over natural forces. God indeed is omnipotent! He has sufficient power to handle every challenging situation of our life. Unfortunately, Peter was ignorant of this nature of God and he paid dearly for it; He toiled all night. God’s power can bring about all that you need in a twinkling of an eye. That is the reason the attitude of gratitude is essential to move to a level of fulfillment.
- He was ignorant of God’s Omnipresence
God is everywhere. Though Heaven is His throne; the earth actually is His footstool. God’s presence is everywhere. David knew this and he walked in this reality. That was his testimony in Psalm 23: “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures…Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me: your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”
WHAT PETER DID NOT KNOW ABOUT LIFE
Peter also demonstrated his ignorance of what life is all about. Of course, since he has gotten his understanding of God wrong there was no way he could get other things right.
- Peter did not know that life is a test; life is trust; life is a temporary assignment.
- Peter did not know that by strength shall no man prevail (I Samuel 2:9).
- Peter did not know that there is time for everything and a season for every purpose under heaven (Ecc. 3:1)
- Peter did not know that except the Lord build the house they labor in vain that builds because the race is not for the swift neither the battle for the strong Psalm 127:1).
- Peter did not know that success in life is not only a function of hard work but hard work with a factor of God’s grace.
WHAT PETER GAVE TO GET THE 11TH HOUR MIRACLE
Peter definitely experienced an unprecedented miracle. I call it 11th-hour miracle because he had lost all hope and has completely given up. Every miracle is a combination of both human and divine factor. God has a part to play but he always expects us to play our own role. What did Peter do to overcome his disappointing situation?
- He surrendered his boat for Jesus. The boat was a symbol of his business and by extension a means of his livelihood. For you also to bounce back, you must learn to “Trust the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him and He will make your paths straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes.” ( Prov 3:5).
- He gave God an attention. Peter did not only surrender his boat for Jesus’ use, he also sat with other people to hear what Jesus would have to say. The difficulty God has ever been having with man is how to secure his attention. Until God secures your attention no significant change can occur in your life.
- He listened to and obey the word of God. God’s word is an expression of His thought. Your miracle is coded and packaged in God’s word. So when you are void of God’s word, disillusion and disappointment will eventually partner with you. When it was obvious for Peter that all hope was lost he responded positively to God’s word: “But because you say so, I will let down the nets.” When Peter eventually hung on God’s word, timely miracle located him.
- He admitted his limitation and sinfulness. Listen to the confession of Peter: “Simon answered, Master, we’ve worked hard all night and have caught nothing… Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!”” You don’t need to commit suicide because things are not going the way you plan. Sometimes human competence fails. But underneath always is the everlasting arm. Jesus himself gave a timeless invitation to the weary and the heavy laden that they would have rest for their souls (Matt. 11:28)
WHAT PETER GOT AT THE END OF THE DAY
Peter got the 11th-hour miracle! See how the bible painted the picture: “When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.”I want to encourage all the young folks out there who are having their hope dashed already that when the going got tough the tough should actually get going because tough time never last but tough people do. You can also bounce back. So, move from the present situation with gratitude to God for the next desired altitude especially in this 11th month of the year that is dedicated to Thanksgiving.
The Godly Brains