Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; Luke 5:10b
Good morning, happy Wednesday and many blessings my dear family.
In today’s Gospel (Luke 5:1-11), Jesus called his first disciples. Jesus was walking by the lake of Gennesaret. He was standing on the shore when he saw two boats that were close to the shore. The fisherman had just finished their fishing for the day. They had gotten out of their boats, and they were washing their nets.
Jesus brazenly stepped into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon. He said to Simon: “Put out into the deep and lower your nets. Simon replied, “Master, we have fished all night and we did not catch any fish. However, I will do as you ask.” As we know, Simon and the other fishermen caught so many fish that their nets began to tear. Everyone was astonished and amazed!
When Peter returned to the shore, he jumped out of the boat, went to Jesus and fell at his feet. Peter said to Jesus: “Depart from me, Lord, for I am sinful man.” Clearly Peter and the other fishermen realized that this catch of fish was extraordinary. Peter knew that Jesus had done an amazing deed and he was in awe of Jesus and his power. Then Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching people.” When all of them returned to shore, the disciples left everything and followed Jesus.
I ponder on Jesus' response to Peter's confession of himself as a sinner. 'Do not be afraid: from now on you will be catching people'. Peter is given his mission when he realizes his sinfulness: this insight actually makes him a better apostle, for he can understand better those he is sent to, he knows he shares their need for mercy and salvation.
I wonder, are there occasions that I believe that life should be different for myself or others; that God should have arranged things differently? Think of occasions when I was thinking in this way and speak to God about them. ‘Do not be afraid’. What do I fear at the moment? Speak to Jesus about these fears. ‘They left everything and followed him’. What have I left in order to follow Jesus? What do I find difficult at the moment to leave in order to follow him more closely?
Today Jesus will call all of us to be fishers of people. You can count on it! However, first we must live Jesus’ message. If we are not living his message, no one will take the time to listen to us. The men and women who decided to follow Jesus were captured by Jesus’ love for the poor and the needy. Jesus was humble and he cared for the poor, the sick, and the least ones. Let us strive to imitate Jesus in his compassion for others this day.