In Luke 5, there is this moment when Jesus is on the shore of Lake Galilee. A crowd had gathered to hear what Jesus had to say.
As the crowd pressed around Jesus, nearby are tired fishermen who have been up all night. They are cleaning their empty nets. They are smelly, they are tired, and it has been a frustrating night because they haven’t caught anything.
It is at this moment that Jesus jumped into the boat of one of the men, Peter. From here Jesus taught whilst Peter managed the boat that was no doubt being pushed and pulled by the waves, the tide and currents.
Once His teaching is finished, Jesus the teacher turned to Peter the fisherman and said, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.’ Jesus asked Peter, the fisherman, the one who had just been doing Him a favour, the one who was exhausted, the professional who had not caught anything all night, to go and put the boat out where Jesus suggested in order to catch some fish.
Peter answered, ‘Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.’
What is fascinating is that there is immediate conflict for Peter in this moment. He knows fish and fishing. What Jesus is suggesting does not seem to make sense. Yet, if he means it when he calls Jesus master, then how can he not do what Jesus asks?
So Peter obeys. He obeys even when it doesn’t make sense, and even when it feels like we know better. He obeys when he doesn’t feel like it.
You see, when Jesus is master you end up saying “because you say so”.