Daily Reflection – 9/7/2023
While the crowd was pressing in on Jesus and listening to the word of God, he was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret. He saw two boats there alongside the lake; the fishermen had disembarked and were washing their nets. Getting into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, he asked him to put out a short distance from the shore. Then he sat down and taught the crowds from the boat. After he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water and lower your nets for a catch.” Simon said in reply, “Master, we have worked hard all night and have caught nothing, but at your command I will lower the nets.” When they had done this, they caught a great number of fish and their nets were tearing. They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come to help them. They came and filled both boats so that they were in danger of sinking. When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at the knees of Jesus and said, “Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man.” For astonishment at the catch of fish they had made seized him and all those with him, and likewise James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners of Simon. Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.” When they brought their boats to the shore, they left everything and followed him. (Luke 5:1-11)
Today’s Gospel details the call of Jesus to Peter and some of the disciples. They were struck by His teaching, and they were struck by the miracle he performed.
But this Gospel is not simply about a famous moment 2000 years ago by the Sea of Galilee. It’s about right now, in the defining moments of our daily lives. God is always touching us and calling us—warts, weakness and all—through Jesus, with his words, “Follow me.”
He comes not only in worship, but in the frustration of hard work where we catch nothing, in the times where it seems we are sinking; God comes not only in washing our nets but in washing our dishes and waiting to pick up the kids from soccer practice; He calls us in the people we love and in people who drive us crazy, even those we call our enemies. He calls us to hear his voice, to bring the compassion and justice of God to a world that needs it desperately.
God’s calling to us continues to this very minute as you read this reflection. It is not an invitation! It is not “hey, y’all wanna come over here?”
God’s call throughout history is one of command; sometimes subtle and gentle and sometimes violent.
Sometimes that call is to radical vocation and sometimes it is a call to feed God’s sheep right where we are, in our families, at our work, in our church and in our communities.
God’s call is not a single event, it is a lifelong process filled with much failure punctuated with occasional bright points of success.
Stop and reflect on this tired, beat-up world. Beset by the pandemic, rattled by recession, its future clouded by the unknown. But always there is hope. Hope that it can and will be made better. But that will not happen if each of us do not recognize that it is time that Christ take priority in our lives. Not a political party. Not one issue about which we are passionate. Rather it is about the issue of humankind and its relation to Christ. That is not something decided by an election. Rather it is defined by our self- election to a group of people whose lives are defined by Jesus Christ and ALL that he teaches. It’s defined by Jesus Christ talking primacy in our life – not a person or a party. Its defined by our obedience to His word and our willingness to recognize that our voice, our touch and our presence can be a drop of love which fills the heart of another to overflow in hope.
Prayer of The Day
Lord Jesus, fill my heart with love and compassion for those who do not know you or follow you. May I be a good witness of your truth and salvation to my family, friends, and co-workers.
God chooses ordinary people, like you and me, as his ambassadors and He uses the ordinary circumstances of our daily lives and work situations to draw others into his kingdom. Jesus speaks the same message to us today: we will “catch people” for the kingdom of God if we allow the light of Jesus Christ to shine through us. God wants others to see the light of Christ in us in the way we live, speak, and witness the joy of the Gospel. Paul the Apostle says, “But thanks be to God, who in Christ Jesus always leads us in triumph, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him.