Thursday, September 5, 2013

“No man commands safely unless he has learned well how to obey.”

'Obedience is mission: "I have come into this world to do the will of my Father, who has sent me." Where there is no obedience, there is no virtue; where there is no virtue there is no good; where good is wanting, there is no love, there is no God; where God is not, there is no Heaven.'--St. Padre Pio

Gospel Text: (LK 5:1-11)
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 the boats 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.

Practically speaking, what does lowering our nets look like?

First and foremost, it means acting and speaking in such a way that we shine the light of Christ into others’ lives. Befriend someone. Offer to pray with a neighbor who is sick. Invite an acquaintance over for coffee or dessert. As you try to do these “small” things with love, remember to just be yourself, not some idealized version of the “perfect” Christian. Just take one step forward with someone, and see what happens. Most likely, you will find Jesus’ light shining out of you just fine whether you share about your faith or talk about your favorite book or movie.

When Jesus first asked St. Peter to let down his nets, he was fairly skeptical. The best response he could conjure up was something along the lines of: “I’m just doing this because you asked me to.” And look how miraculously Jesus worked! So even if you feel like you have been “fishing” for a long time with few results, go ahead and throw that net out one more time today. You may just be amazed at the results.

Lower those nets!

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