When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.”
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.”
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. – Luke 5:4-7 NIV
Simon was a professional fisherman and knew how to catch fish in the Sea of Galilee. It isn’t for lack of knowledge or effort that he and his companions had failed to catch any fish that night; the fish just weren’t there.
Jesus instruction to try again just didn’t make any sense; there were no fish. But Simon chose to follow Jesus’ instruction with results that astonished the fishermen. They caught so many fish that their boats began to sink.
What if, after a long and fruitless season of service, Jesus were to say to us, “Try again, this time doing it my way.” Would we be too weary or too sure of our current methods to respond? Or would we say “Because you say so”, and then follow his direction? Would we catch a boat load of fish? Or would we be content with just washing our empty nets.