“It is the Lord!”
Some people are very handy around the house and can fix anything. Their minds easily wrap around problems of house wiring, plumbing and other household issues. Then we have people we sometimes call “cerebral”—or some such name—to distinguish them from the mainstream of society. Cerebral people sometimes are not the best at doing “hands on” things even though they have a lot of brain power to analyze problems.
I suggest that Peter was a “hands on” kind of person. He loved to be out doing things with his hands. Hence he was a sailor and fisherman by profession. The apostle John, on the other hand, gives us the idea that he was a profound thinker who could sort through a problem using his head. It seems John was a fishing partner with his brother James and with Peter (Luke 5:10), so he could accomplish much with his hands as well.
The scene we read in John 21:1-8 is about one of the resurrection appearances of our Lord to the disciples. They went to Galilee at Jesus’ request. While waiting for Him to appear, Peter decided to go fishing. The others followed him and fished all night without success. Jesus called to them from shore at daybreak and got them to try once more. They did, and the net filled so full that they could not haul the catch into the boat.
They had not recognized Jesus yet, but the scene got John thinking. John recalled a similar miraculous catch of fish a couple of years earlier (Luke 5:1-11). They had fished all night without success, when Jesus met up with them and told them to try again. That time the nets began to break when they sought to haul the great catch into the boat.
John recalled that incident—possibly recognized the Galilean accent of the man on shore—and decided it must be Jesus doing the same miracle again. So he told to Peter, “It is the Lord!” John trusted Peter to do something with that information.
That was all the help Peter needed. He hastily wrapped himself with his coat, jumped in the water and waded to shore. His impatience with waiting to reach shore—until the boat had been rowed to land—showed how much of an action person he was. John, on the other hand, was the thinker of the group and was able to ponder the miracle and make sense of what was happening.
Are you dissatisfied with yourself as a Christian today because you are a ‘doer” like Peter, rather than a “thinker” like John? Satan can tempt us to be unhappy with the way the Lord has created us for service in the church. All types of people are needed to accomplish the will of the Lord. Be humbled if you are among the “thinkers”, and be content if you are an ordinary “doer” like Peter. It takes us all working together to see God’s will done on earth.
It is enough that we are faithful with what we do have. We should not worry about what we might accomplish if only we had different gifts. We are all needed, both thinkers and doers.