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Just after daybreak, Jesus stood on the beach; but the disciples did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to them, “Children, you have no fish, have you?” They answered him, “No.” He said to them, “Cast the net to the right side of the boat, and you will find some.” So they cast it, and now they were not able to haul it in because there were so many fish. That disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, “It is the Lord!” When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on some clothes, for he was naked, and jumped into the sea. But the other disciples came in the boat, dragging the net full of fish, for they were not far from the land, only about a hundred yards off.

When they had gone ashore, they saw a charcoal fire there, with fish on it, and bread. Jesus said to them, “Bring some of the fish that you have just caught.” So Simon Peter went aboard and hauled the net ashore, full of large fish, a hundred fifty-three of them; and though there were so many, the net was not torn. Jesus said to them, “Come and have breakfast.” (John 21:4-12a)

On this Friday of Easter Week, let yourself imagine the joy with which the disciples spent this day. A new day has dawned. The beloved disciple recognizes Jesus. Peter is so excited that he puts on his clothes and jumps into the sea! The haul of fish is huge! And Jesus, he who was dead and buried just last week, now says, “Come! Come and have breakfast.”

The sun must now be shining and the charcoal is burning and the sea smells of salt and glitters in the sun and the sand is cool under one’s feet. The warm, smoky smell of grilling fish drifts down the beach and all is once again right with the world, for the master has returned, triumphant and full of love for his friends, announcing breakfast after a long, long, dark, dark, hopeless night.

Let these images soak into your psyche today. The Lord always comes through. The dark night doesn’t last forever. The world is indeed precious and beautiful, full of sights and sounds and smells and tastes that remind us to be fully alive and fully present. They reward us, thrilling us with pleasure and comfort. Stop and notice!

Stop for a minute and imagine Jesus cooking for you, feeding you when you are weary in body and soul, saying “Come and have breakfast.” Carry these images with you through these Fifty Days and beyond, saying “Yes!” to God, “Yes!” to life, “Yes!” to beauty, “Yes!” to joy, “Yes!” to Love.

– Penny Nash

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