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Jesus and the Fishermen

Fishing Nets When Jesus was around thirty years old, he began his ministry of teaching and healing.

One day Jesus was standing by a lake. He was talking about God. Whenever he talked, something about his words really touched people's hearts. They wanted to know more about life and faith and God. They wanted to be part of this ministry. People were crowding around him and listening to him teach. The crowd was getting bigger and bigger.

Nearby, there were some fishermen who were washing their nets. Jesus saw two boats, left there by the fishermen. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to a man named Simon. He smiled at Simon and asked him to row the boat out a little from shore.

Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.

When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, "Row out into deep water, and let down the nets to catch fish."

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."

Simon rowed farther from shore and then lowered the nets down into the water. As soon as Simon lowered the nets, he began to catch fish. They caught such a large number of fish that the nets were stretching with the weight of the fish. So Simon called his partners in the other boat to come and help.

The other fishermen came. They filled both boats so full that the boats were heavy and floating low in the water. Simon and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish, and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon's partners.

Then Jesus said: "From now on you will fish for people." So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.

Discussion: If you were there at the lake on this day, what would you tell other people about this day? What do you wonder about? If you were making a movie about this story, what would you include in the movie?

Craft: Make fish from paper or craft foam; make a display of fish and nets using netting from bags of fruit. (Scissors, paper punch, pens; craft foam, cardstock paper, "nets" from fruit bags.)

January 2014