Christ is THE one who comes
Very early on, in each of the Gospels, we have the account of Peter’s invitation to follow Jesus. Some of the accounts vary in details. For our study, we will look at the longest account that takes place in the Gospel of Luke (Lk 5:1-11). There have been countless pages that have discussed the details of Simon Peter’s calling, but one point is pivotal: Jesus shows up and his action is life changing.
At the beginning of his ministry and public life, Christ is stepping onto the scene and into the lives of so many people. Peter, his brother Andrew and others are fishing and minding their own business (literally). For them it is just another day at work on the shores of Galilee. So, not only does he come to them, but he comes to them when they are living out an ordinary and mundane task.
They had been out all night fishing and now they were doing their routine at the end of a long night’s work. Picture the boats in the shallow water, pressed up on the shore. Picture a group of men who are tired, wet, and frustrated washing out the nets, the tools that were supposed to bring them their income, but ultimately failed them.
A stranger comes up to them and does not even say a word. He simply gets into one of their boats and starts giving orders. This Nazarean tells them to get back into their boats and place down the anchor a short distance from shore so he can hold his classroom for the day. It is very important to note that when he gives this order, we are given no response by Peter, Andrew or the other men. All they do is listen.
This random man comes and gets into their prized possession; into their source of income and way of providing for their families. They basically let him use their boat as a teacher’s desk at the end of a long work day when they caught absolutely nothing that would make them money or give them food.
If that wasn’t enough, this man then orders them to go back into the deep to do some more fishing. Here we can finally see that the men had had enough. Peter tells him that they had been out all night and had no luck at all. However, Simon still heeds the command of Christ and throws the nets back in the water (the ones that had just spent all their time cleaning up at the end of their day). When they do that, they catch more fish then they know what to do with, and they are amazed.
Jesus makes the move and lets them know he is on the scene. Then, once when they listen to Christ and trust him, they are utterly amazed by how he works in their lives. Christians are being given tremendously important directions: recognize that God is here, listen to him intently and profoundly, trust him with everything you have, and allow yourself to be amazed by what he will do in your life.
Everyone has their own boat that Christ steps into; look for it today, and be amazed by who Jesus is and who he is calling you to be.
Thomas Griffin teaches Apologetics in the religion department at a Catholic high school on Long Island and lives with his wife. He received a master’s degree in theology from St. Joseph’s Seminary & College and is currently a master’s candidate in philosophy at Holy Apostles Seminary & College. He writes for several Catholic media outlets.
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