Deep Water

Scripture selection: Luke 5:4

When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.”

I love the fact that the Bible is filled with so many opportunities to see spiritual truth hidden just below the surface.

Take this little story about fishing.

While I think it is a danger to “read into” scripture to make a point – here, there may be some real merit in taking a look at water in which they are fishing.

In symbolically teaching them about the great task they are going to be about in ministry, Jesus tells his fishermen disciples to go to “deep” water.

It is there – in the dark depths – that they find the catch of fish for which they have been fruitlessly toiling.

So it is with spiritual fishing.

While some efforts on the surface might prove some results, it is when we go deeper that real success is to be found.

In the depths of

  • Christ’s teaching
  • Christ’s example
  • Christ’s sacrificial service
  • Christ’s humility
  • Christ’s love

In these holy depths – we find the way to “catch” others and lead them to the life we have found in relationship with God through Christ.

It isn’t a trick or a gimmick.

It’s a powerful truth.

We must have the faith to follow our Lord into the “depths” so that we can find life – for ourselves – and others.

By Paul Simrell

The Reverend Paul W. Simrell has served for over thirty years in a variety of congregational and institutional settings. He is a recognized minister with standing in the Virginia region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada and is nationally endorsed by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for specialized ministry in both pastoral counseling and chaplaincy. Ordained in 1982, he has served congregations in Kentucky, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. He currently serves as the pastor of Elpis Christian Church, a small, historic congregation located just a few miles west of Richmond, Virginia. Elpis is the Greek word meaning “expectant hope.” He also serves on the associate clinical staff of the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care, Richmond, Virginia, both as a pastoral counselor and a ministerial assessment specialist, specializing in executive, clergy and relationship coaching. He is a graduate of the University of Florida and Lexington Theological Seminary and has done advanced clinical training in chaplaincy and pastoral counseling at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, Children’s Medical Center and Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas and the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Virginia. He is a Certified Pastoral Counselor, an ACPE Practitioner, and a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors. He is a Certified Facilitator of the Prepare-Enrich relationship assessment and skills-building program and served as a volunteer chaplain for over twenty years with the CJW Medical Center campuses in Richmond, Virginia. His avocational interests include playing the piano and drawing. He is very happily married to his wife Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell, a free-lance writer, who is also a Certified Facilitator for the Prepare-Enrich program. Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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