We have celebrated the Resurrection of Jesus at Easter, the coming of new life from the dark tomb of Joseph’s lovely garden.
One of the striking features of the appearances of Jesus is the great amount of unbelief among the disciples. Thomas is an outstanding example of unbelief.
Poor Thomas had the nickname, “Doubting” attached to him for many years. His need for physical contact with Jesus has placed him on the top of the disbelieving list. Though undeserved, he has not been able to escape the name ‘’Doubting Thomas.’’
The disciples had seen, touched, heard, and spoken to our risen Lord. You would think that those physical encounters would have been enough for the disciples to start out right away and spread that Good News of Easter.
In John’s Gospel, we see Peter and others in Galilee not doing evangelism work, but doing what they had done for most of their adult lives fishing, and having no luck at all. Then, in the first moments of the day, at day break, Jesus appears on the shore.
The disciples did not recognize him. He called out to the boat, “Children, have you any fish?’’ “No.” “Cast the net on the right side of the boat, and you will find some,” Jesus tells them. And did they too many fish in the net to get it properly into the boat.
Then Peter realized who this man was on the shore, “It is the Lord.’’ Peter could not wait for the boat to be oared to shore. He jumps into the lake and swims to Jesus. And there is his Lord, right in front of him, inviting everyone to breakfast.
After a good breakfast of fresh fish, Jesus begins to question Peter. ‘’Peter do you love me more than your friends around you?” “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” “Well then, feed my sheep,” Jesus said.
Twice more Jesus asks the question of Peter, and twice more Peter answers that he truly loves the Lord. Jesus then goes on to tell Peter that as he goes about loving Him and feeding and caring for the “sheep,” there will come a time when Peter will not be as strong as he is this morning. And Peter will have to rely on others to help get around.
This encounter between Peter and Jesus reminds us that we do not have to have “high mountaintop experiences” to hear/see/touch Jesus. He is as close as a breakfast, or any other time or place or event. We need only to look, and dive into the life of faith.
We need no church building or great stadium. We can see Jesus in the events and people around us. Setting around a camp fire or sitting at a fast food restaurant, we can become the setting for meeting Jesus in the life of others.
My wife and I eat out almost each Sunday after worship. We have met some very nice people in the restaurant. Some of the people even call themselves our “Subway congregation.’’
Why not start your day with breakfast and Jesus, and tell others about Jesus and his love and care for them? The day is always breaking when we can be with Jesus, and be with others in Jesus’ love. Jesus is alive and well in all of the world.