What’s the purpose of my empty boat?

Empty Boat

In 2012, on the brink of entering university but with no money to finance my studies, I applied for three national scholarships. I know what you are probably thinking: “Yes, she definitely got one!” Sorry to disappoint you, nope I didn’t! I got shortlisted for one scholarship and felt certain that this was the way that God intended to provide for me. I got a rude awakening and reminder that God doesn’t always do things the easy way when I was told the disappointing news that I was rejected. 😦

With only a couple of weeks before school started, I knew three things for certain:

  1. I was meant to start school that September.
  2. I had no idea how #1 was going to come to fruition because I had no money.
  3. All the things I knew and tried hadn’t worked and I was out of options and slowly running out of time.

I had nothing left. Like Peter and his companions in St. Luke 5:1-11, I was stuck with an empty boat that was represented by my wasted efforts, failure and defeat in gaining a scholarship, my seeming-to-loom lost dream of going to university and my disillusionment. Little did I know that there was so much purpose in my empty boat.

Your empty boat is exactly where Jesus needs it to be.

Your empty boat serves as an invitation for Jesus to sit in the midst and minister to you and others. With the crowd waiting to hear Him minister, Jesus needed Peter’s empty boat, as the central point of His ministry for that day. I can imagine that being asked to launch out also forced Peter to stop washing his nets and just listen to what Jesus had to say. My empty boat pushed me to stop all my efforts and planning and just focus on God.

Your empty boat is a test of your faith.

Operating with an empty boat requires you to take whatever steps Jesus directs you to. After being ministered to, Peter was told to launch out into the deep. Maybe Peter obeyed because he was softened up by Jesus’ preaching or maybe he did it to shut Jesus up “I don’t see the point but if you say so…” What was important was that he pushed out into the deep, despite having been there before and caught nothing.

My launch into the deep involved swallowing my pride and telling the Director at my summer employment job, the true nature of my circumstances, when one day, out of the blue, she asked me about my preparations for school.

Your empty boat is an opportunity for a miracle.

Through Peter’s obedience he was rewarded with an unbelievable miracle. His and his partners’ empty boats were filled. I can just imagine how onlookers looked on in shocked.

My miracle came when the Director offered me a part-time job where my work schedule would be dictated by my school schedule. I also received a call from the scholarship foundation offering me a partial tuition grant for year one. That grant was renewed over the course of the three years. My job covered my expenses and any tuition shortfalls for the next three years.

Your empty boat is an opportunity for Jesus to change the course of your life.

Through this empty boat miracle, Peter got a good look at who Jesus was and he repented. This situation raised Peter, James and John’s belief to the point where they left their regular lives to earnestly follow Jesus in ministry. Through an empty boat, Jesus gained three (3) best friends.

Through my empty boat, I experienced God as My Provider. Over those three years, I ended up in so many areas of ministry and picked up some many new skills and on-the job experiences. When I finished school, as planned, all the experience gained proved to be what was needed land my first job out of university for a role the company was not even hiring for.

My Point? I assure you there is one 🙂

There is a purpose for your empty boat. There is purpose in every ounce of uncertainty, disappointment, failure, defeat, wasted efforts, seemingly lost dreams, and feelings of disillusionment.

Will you trust God to use your empty boat?

Thank you for stopping by and reading. Have you ever had an empty boat moment that God used to transform your life? I would love to hear about your experience in the comments section, below. 🙂

“May the Lord bless you and protect you. May the Lord smile on you and be gracious to you. May the Lord show you His favour and give you peace” – Numbers 6: 23-26


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I am a dynamic young lady who loves the Lord and seek to have a joy that no one can take away. My all-time favourite thing to do is gaining discoveries by design from My Father during our time each day. Reading, learning and trying new things falls behind in a close second place. My dream is to use my God-given talents to positively impact as many people as possible. As a proud Wolmerian, with a zest for life, I adhere to the “Age Quod Agis” motto in that whatsoever I do, I always do it to the best of my ability.

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