Dining with Jesus

Dining with Jesus – on the beach John 21:4-14
This week’s reflections on dining with Jesus have all occurred in someone’s home. Today we see Jesus dining al fresco with a few of his disciples, something they had done countless times together, and sometimes with very large crowds. Today it is different, today they are on the beach, and there is no-one else around.
As I have explored dining with Jesus in the Gospels, I have realised that being with Jesus invites the unexpected. In today’s breakfast, the surprise is Jesus.
The disciples are in Galilee, at a loose end, not knowing what will happen, how to be what Jesus asked of them, so led by Simon Peter, they went back to what they knew; fishing. All night they were out there, chucking the net one side one side of the boat, and then the other. No fish. Mutter, mutter, ‘I think we have forgotten how to do it!’
Come morning, someone calls from the beach, ‘cast the net to the right’. Mutter, mutter: ‘yeah we have done that. Ok, one last shot then!’ Of course, they realise Jesus is on the shore when the fish surge into the net. The risen Jesus, with them again! Small wonder Peter jumps overboard and swims ashore. Can you see Jesus grinning as his impulsive, eager, loving friend comes leaping through the waves, and clasps him closely. ‘Ah Jesus,’ exclaims Peter, ‘you are here! Oh sorry, I’ve made you all damp. Eh, but we have missed you!’
And Jesus smiles, pats him on the shoulder with his scarred hand, and turns back to tending the breakfast. ‘We need a few more fish’, he says, ‘bring some over.’ If you have never eaten fish fresh from the sea and cooked over a fire, you have missed a real treat. It is sublime, it needs no lemon or sauce, perfect, just as God made it. So they settle down with gusto, tucking into this deliciousness, munching away with the risen Lord. Jesus can pass through walls and locked doors, but he still eats. The new normal must have been a series of mind-blowing revelations to those men.
In our own new normal, lets welcome the unexpected with Jesus. Embrace change, invite the amazing. Like any loving parent, our Father loves to surprise us.
God bless you.

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