Casting My Net One More Time
I’m writing this post under the assumption that I am not the only mom who feels tired. Can all the tired mama’s virtually raise their hand right now (if a glass of wine is in your hand, that’s even better)? I’m not referring to the exhaustion that can be easily erased with an 8 hour stretch of uninterrupted sleep (although I imagine that is a wonderful remedy). Mama, you know the kind of ‘tired’ I’m talking about, right? It is a unique kind of weariness that can settle in your soul and drain you of your focus, determination and even your joy.
I love being a mom more than anything, but it is a job that sometimes leaves me feeling like I’ve reached the end of my rope. Like, I’ve given it my all and then just a little bit more and somehow my attempts at success still don’t seem good enough. There are times when it feels like despite how hard I try, my efforts just come up short. Like, my toddler still isn’t getting the concept that he has to be nice to his sister all-day-every-day. Poor buddy thinks if he is nice to her at breakfast, then he doesn’t have to share with her at lunch and by dinner I’m about losing my mind listening to them fight over the same old toy.
Or how about the fact that I spend a whole hour planning out meals for the week and making a detailed grocery list and it never fails – I usually forget at least one thing and that one thing is usually something that my husband really wanted. #wifefail. And don’t even get me started on the teething baby. There are days when I wake up after being up multiple times a night soothing Andi Rose and I think, “I just don’t want to meet everyone’s needs today. I want to go back to bed.” When it feels like I’m failing at this whole motherhood thing (mama, please tell me you feel this way too sometimes), it is so easy for me to want to waive my white flag of surrender and call it quits – only I’m pretty sure my family wouldn’t accept my resignation. And of course, I would never physically leave my family. They are my whole world. But there are times that I want to check out emotionally & mentally because I’m just so exhausted.
I’m pretty sure there are other moms who, just like me, grow weary on occasion. And turns out, Simon Peter, one of Jesus’ disciples, was weary once too. And ya’ll – I found SO much encouragement by Simon’s response to Jesus in the midst of his weariness. The story takes place in Luke 5:1-11. Simon was a fisherman who had been out fishing all night only to return to shore the following morning with empty nets. He didn’t catch a single fish. Nada. Nothing. Not even a minnow. He had been working hard all night and I imagine he was exhausted and frustrated. Fishing was his livelihood and it would appear by this story he wasn’t exactly crushing his goals. But then Jesus entered the picture and asked to get on his boat. Oh! How much better life is when we invite Jesus into our boat!
Jesus gets into Simon Peter’s boat and he says in verse 4, “Push out into deep water and let your nets out for a catch.” Simon responds in verse 5 by saying, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”
Verse 6 reads, “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.”
When I read this fascinating passage of scripture, God encouraged my heart. Simon Peter obeyed God’s command and the success he experienced almost sunk his boat. But it all started with one more cast of his net, something that seemed crazy to him after all the fruitless labor he had just put forth. But I believe motherhood is like that. Sometimes our success comes with just one more cast of the net, even when it feels useless. I believe in those times when I feel weary and beaten down, I must remember that God sees deep into the waters, or in this case, deep into my children’s hearts and he’s saying, “Go after it, one more time, Ashley. And do it with a happy and expectant heart. I see something remarkable and I need you to go catch it.” So I try one more time to instill that lesson into my child’s heart. I try one more time to point my family to what is good, true and noble. I try one more time to display God’s love, gentleness and goodness with my own reactions and behaviors – even when I don’t feel like it – because I can almost guarantee Simon Peter didn’t feel like pushing his boat back out into the water that day after pulling an all-nighter…but he did, because deep down he had hope in what Jesus could do.
And just like Simon Peter, I too have hope in what Jesus can do through me…but the miracle starts with simply casting my net one more time. And my hope is that one day after casting my net day in & day out for decades, I’ll have caught something marvelous and then I can release 2 successful adults into our society who love Jesus & love people (and maybe those 2 adults will even be best friends who share). 😉 When I think about how much God loves my family and how he longs to get in ‘my boat’ and help me out, my weariness begins to transform into worship.
I think this little lesson tucked away in the book of Luke can be applied to so many facets of life. Whatever your current situation is, I hope this post challenges you to cast your net one more time. 🙂
Happy Hump Day, friends!