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A Breakfast with Jesus

(John 21:1-14)

“Come and have breakfast.” An ordinary and familiar invitation that reverberates in many households at daybreak. The first meal is often regarded as an unwelcome intrusion to the entrance of a hurried day. However, in John 21:12, when Jesus appeared to his disciples for the third time after his resurrection, a lot had already happened that night before the disciples responded to the invitation to “come and have breakfast” with Jesus. 

Scripture records that the disciples went fishing but caught nothing the whole night. The fishing expedition was not for recreation purposes, they depended on the catch for sustenance. At the shore calling out to them, Jesus replayed a scene resembling the first call to the disciples to follow Him (Mark 1:16-20) except that this time, He addressed the tough, rugged fishermen “Children” and asked an ego-punctuated question, “Do you have any fish?”

Soon the disciples recognised it was Jesus who performed a miraculous catch of fish. Returning to the shore, their eyes landed on the fish over the charcoal and the bread that was ready to be served. I confess at this point in my devotional reading; I was so thrilled to discover that our Lord prepared breakfast for the disciples; a similar act of service when he took the basin and the towel (John 13:1-20), I broadcasted to our 20-member YCKC breakfast team: “Hey, our Lord also prepares breakfast leh!” God can minister whether it’s a seemingly menial task or a glorious miracle.

Interestingly, not only did Jesus supply the fish and the bread for breakfast, but Jesus invited the disciples to bring the fish they had caught to Him (John 21:10). This beautifully suggests the Lord delights to include them as co-workers. The chapter closes with Jesus’ momentous breakfast conversation with Peter which marked the inauguration of the first shepherd for the first church in the first century (John 21:15-23).

Likely, the earlier two encounters with the Risen Christ have done little to revive the disciples. For the disciples to carry on a spiritually-empowered life & ministry without the physical presence of Jesus is simply inconceivable. The Lord further pursues them in this third encounter at the Sea of Galilee. Jesus points the feeble disciples to the restorative power of grace and forgiveness demonstrated by His remarkable willingness to meet their basic needs. He invites them to co-work with Him and redirects them to their first call as His disciples. Jesus desires to walk into their barrenness and bring them to fruitfulness.

I had a difficult week of rushing deadlines and putting out fires, leaving me physically and emotionally drained at the end of the week. However, I prided myself that I managed to whack each mole as it appeared, or so I thought. But one morning in my devotional time, the Lord prompted me otherwise. “Child, are you done with your soulish living?” Images of my frantic, edgy, and dreary preoccupation flashed back to my mind, displaying all my self-effort and whining, void of Christ’s resurrected power and presence. Guilty as charged. 

21 days have passed since we celebrated Easter Sunday. Have we quickly slid back to our trivial pursuits? Shrouded by the earthly demands? Beaten by the hard blows of life events? Join me in asking the Lord to remove our soulish living and barrenness, to give Him full access to our story and identity, and to power each of our mornings with a spiritual breakfast with Jesus. 

By sister Hee Ching