Launching Out Into The
John Wright Follette
"... as the people pressed upon Him to hear the
Word of God, He stood by the lake of Gennesaret,
and saw two ships standing by the lake: but the
fishermen were gone out of them, and were washing
their nets and He entered into one of the ships,
which was Simon's, and prayed him that he would
thrust out a little from the land.
"And he sat down, and taught the people out of the
ship. Now when he had left speaking, he said unto
Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your
nets for a draught" Luke 5:1-4
When we "press upon Him," He will take the initiative
and say, "Let me enter your ship and thrust it out from
the shore." Because we are not yet ready for the "deep,"
He will push us out from the shore and teach us, setting before
us the initial understandings of the "Laws of the Spirit."
This is our first adjustment to spiritual life.
This "ship" that Jesus entered is our personal
spiritual experience. Notice that He said, "Thrust out
a little" rather than "Launch out into the deep."
This is the initial step in our detachment from the "land"
which represents all that pertains to our earth-bound life.
His intention is to move us out upon the great "sea"
of revelation that is boundless and eternal.
When we enter this "ship" with Jesus and leave
the shoreline behind, it is only the beginning. But potentially,
it holds all that will move out into the depths. The decisions
we make here will govern all that is out there.
When converted, we become a child of God. But, in His sight
we are more than a child, we are fully grown, spiritually
mature, and seated with Christ in heavenly places. This is
a judicial, or potential truth that is to become a reality
within us through the power of the Holy Spirit.
I may hold in my hand a seed from an apple. Potentially,
this seed is a beautiful apple tree, full of blossoms and
fruit. We add nothing to this seed; we merely release that
which is already hidden within it.
In time, the blossoms will fall off and little green apples
appear. It may be said, "This tree which was full of
beautiful blossoms, now has only green knobs on it; this tree
must be backslidden." No, this tree is going through
a process. In due season, it will bear beautiful fruit, and
a hundred more apple trees as well.
Our spiritual life is much more than what now appears. Our
life does not end here. We are partakers now of eternal life.
Lying before us are th eages to come in which this "seed"
will burst into its full development. But we cannot instantly
move into our "potential" and say, "I am an
apple tree." Presently, we are only a seed with the all
the necessary ingredients to becomean apple tree. This little
seed that we are needs to break through the husksof temporal
unreality into the realms of spiritual life where it may come
intoits full development and growth.
As we begin to move into the depths with Him, we have only
a conception of a deeper spiritual experience. Our initial
decision to step out from the shoreline covered vast unknown
reaches. We will face fearful storms and terrible billows,
but always remember, He is on board.
The third step occurs when He says, "Launch out into
the deep." How deep may we go in the things of the Spirit?
There are three ways in which the depths are measured.
The first concerns our distance from the shore line. The
land does not end at the beginning of the shore line. It projects
out under the water and can be walked on. Our depth in spiritual
things is determined by how far we have become detached from
the natural world and the things that pertain to it. We become
detached when these no longer control our life.
The second is determined by our consciousness of spiritual
need. We cannot enter the depths until we are convinced of
the necessity to do so. This consciousness of need must attain
its fullness before we will venture out into the depths.
A third is our spiritual sensitivity. Our depths are governed
by our powers of perception, or our ability to lay hold of
the realities of life in the spiritual realm. Regardless of
our training in the Spirit to apprehend and understand spiritual
things, there is yet a deeper place. The Lord desires us to
know His objectives toward which He is moving. All this brings
us out into the depths of the Spirit.
The Lord had said, "Thrust out." Now He is ready
to invite us to "Launch out." We may have some experiences
that are floating on the surface, but He desires to lead us
out into the deep, knowing there is a greater abundance of
The Lord said, "I have come to give you life and that
more abundantly." He cannot give us this abundant life
until we have first embraced a life of abandonment. This detachment
can be overwhelming because He separates us from everything
that pertains to our old life.
Paul said, "I count all things but loss." Later,
he said, "I suffered the loss." The Lord may say,
"I accepted your willingness to lose all things, now
I will let you lose them." First there is a consent,
then the actual experience of moving into the outworking of
Once He has led us into the deep He will say to us, "Let
down your nets." This "net" represents all
that we are, and is to be let down into His hand with out
understanding what is taking place. What are you throwing
over? All the consent you have of "entity" (What
I am and all I have). The Lord is saying, "I want that
surrendered and thrown into the depths where it will be for
ever gone. It is to be absolutely out of your life experience."
There is an exchange that takes place in the letting down
of our nets,
"Throw it overboard."
"But it is so dark."
"I want it to be dark."
"The water is cold."
"I want it to be cold."
" It will all be gone."
"I want it gone."
We react as we are being plunged into the deeper depths.
We must throw the entire possibilities of our life into the
darkness of that water. All that we are becomes submerged.
But there is a reward, it is here that we catch the fish.
Some are unable to let go. There is a spiritual law that
applies to this.
"Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual,
but that which is natural; and afterward that
which is spiritual" I Cor 15:46.
It would have been perfect if Peter, when asked of the Lord
to "Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets
for a draught (Luke 5:4), had said, "Yes Lord. But, he
was unable to do this. His natural reasoning processes had
to first have their expression. "Master, we have toiled
all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy
word I will let down the net" Luke 5:5.
In effect, Peter is saying "Nevertheless (I do not believe
it) I will let the nets down, but Lord, if there are no fish,
it is your fault because you told me to do it." Nevertheless
- this word is the pivot that brought about a change. In spite
of his feelings, he obeyed.
The nets were let down and became full of fish. The wonder
of it, the power of it. Our boat will get full, and we will
have enough for us, our family, our Church, and even enough
for the mission fields.
How did we get this abundance? By being obedient and stepping
into a little boat where Jesus was seated. When He said, "Thrust
out," we did it. Then He taught us. There had to be the
operation of the power of the Word of God in truth before
He could say, "Launch out into the deep and let down
He is saying to each one of us, "Would you like to let
down your net into this abundance? But the fish are not at
the shore. We must move with Him out where all that is on
the shore has faded from sight. Then our net must be perfectly
released and dropped into the depths.
There is an abundant deposit of truth in the ocean floor
of His presence. Our life will become multiplied, and all
shall have their share.