Matt.4:21 – Going on from there He saw two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee, and his brother John, in the boat with their father Zebedee, mending their nets; and He called them.
I once heard a message about the vocation the different apostles were engaged in at the time of their calling. Peter was a fisherman. He was called by the Lord to be a fisher of men. That was the outstanding spiritual gift in Peter’s life, he had a God given knack about throwing out the nets and hauling in a great catch of fish. His first sermon resulted in 3000 of these fish, this was obviously Peter’s calling. Then there was the Apostle Paul. He was known as a tent maker. I think it is not by accident that the Lord called Paul to restore the fallen “tent of David”. Paul spent his life building the church, the restored tent of David. Now John’s gifting was apparently different from Peter or Paul and maybe it corresponds with his talent we see displayed when John first bursts on the scene. He was not the out front guy like Peter, he was called while mending the nets. Now maybe John’s gift may not appear as exciting as Peter’s but if you go fishing with nets that are full of holes or not prepared properly for fishing its going to be a long, fruitless fishing trip. Here is the definition of the word mending we see in today’s verse.
“To adjust, fit, finish, fit, complete. The fundamental meaning is to put a thing in its appropriate condition, to establish, set up, equip, arrange, prepare, mend. to accomplish. To refit, repair, mend that which is broken such as the nets. Metaphorically, of a person in error, to restore, set right. By implication and in the proper force of katá, meaning to make a perfect fit, suitable, such as.”
So how does this mending of the nets fit in to the work of the ministry? First, John was involved in building individuals lives. He had learned not to focus on the crowds but to put his attention on the hurting individual. John was about the love of God healing one person’s heart. If you think about it John displayed Jesus from that light. He was one on one with Nicodemus and the woman at the well in Samaria. He also remembered his friend Lazarus who needed a miracle. At the end of the day the church is made up of individuals. Maybe the Lord is calling you to follow John into the net mending occupation.