“When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” Luke 5:4
I recently posted on the matter of living beyond limitations and since then, I’ve been turning over the topic in my mind. Coincidentally, in alignment with these thoughts, I’ve listened to a few messages (sermons) and watched a vlog that spoke to the issue, directly and indirectly.
The one recurring theme of them all was the requirement of risk taking. From my own intimate examination of life experiences and those of others I’ve read of or researched, I have noted that in order to self actualize and succeed at the endeavour that you engage in, one must be willing to “Cast their bread upon the water” , so to speak. This word of wisdom, written by Solomon, a couple of thousand of years ago, holds true even today. In Ecclesiastes 11, he instructs us to “Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days”, which I believe is saying, “Put everything you have into it and you will reap great rewards from your investment”.
What does “Put everything into it” mean in todays context? Perhaps it means several hours and years of academic pursuits; huge commitments of time and money; foregoing ‘fun times and things’ in order for that dream business you have just started to not just come to fruition, but to flourish after a few years. Perhaps missing out on things that you’d prefer to do (for example sleep!).
We often second guess these investments because of the cost attached to it. As someone told me a few years ago, you may toss your bread out there, and its eaten by fishes that you never catch! But that is a risk you have to take! No one knows what will happen but you can’t have the wisdom of experience unless you try! How about placing a hook inside the bread so that you get [catch] something for your investment? It’s all about perspective. Fear keeps you from launching out but the bread will eventually become stale and mouldy and less in value. The same thing with some ideas, with time they may lose their relevance or someone else may just have the same idea and step out in faith! Perhaps if its invested wisely, tossed out with careful planning and preparation, who knows what your net and bread will earn you?
In the chapter of Luke where Jesus instructs Simon Peter to let down his nets one more time, Peter had become frustrated because he had tried so many times and failed. Has this happened to you? Have you witnessed so many failures of others that you begin to self sabotage and delay or avoid important steps? Have you engaged in negative self talk that exhaust and demotivate you? Perhaps we need to do some thing that is illustrated in this passage: look to someone who knows more than us (an expert in the field perhaps), see what they have done in the past and also be willing to try again despite the many failures.
” If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, try again!”
Be open to the process. I know, as someone who’s had several failures, that it is hard to not become discouraged. However, I know, again from experience, that when you have a passion, a dream that seems to be with you at every waking moment, no matter what comes, it’s very difficult to abandon and just give up on the dream. Sometimes, unfortunately, we work less at it and are no longer open to the process as time passes and failures pile up. I keep seeing a picture being circulated on social media of a man hacking away at a wall and just as he is close to breaking through, he walks away. That is sad, because so many of us will be and is that person. We become so exhausted, so broken that we just can’t do it anymore.
How do we know when we are close to breaking through, that success is just around the corner?
Sometimes we just know, something resonates within us, and we have to keep at it. Sometimes it comes so quickly, so absolutely, that we are overwhelmed with surprise because we ‘can’t believe how quickly it happened’, forgetting the many years of struggle and sacrifice. The fact is though, many individuals who end up with successful ventures will say that they really had no idea of when to stop, they just knew that they had to keep trying, even when friends and family stopped believing in the dream.
You may have to go it alone
You have to become radical about your dream – there are some instances when we will have to go it alone, and block out the noise of the crowd in order to see our vision clearly. Not everyone is going to believe or be willing to give it all or nothing as you are. There will be a time in the journey that you will need to close everyone out and just do it, go it alone.
Perhaps that time is now.