A few thoughts on this very familiar gospel passage from Luke –
First of all – How many times do we try to do things alone before we “revert” to prayer? The men had fished all night and had empty nets. When Jesus told them to drop the nets again – though they doubted – they obeyed, and their nets were filled to the breaking point. Why don’t we turn to Jesus first when we come up empty? Or better yet, why don’t we turn to Him before we even “fish?” With Jesus at the helm of our boats, we can’t go wrong – right?
Secondly, I can relate to Peter, who says, “Depart from me for I am a sinful man.” Jesus chose ordinary, sinful, doubting people to become His first apostles – not the most learned or even the most faithful. That is such good news for you and for me!! He is calling us to be modern day apostles – and just like He filled these ordinary men with grace, He does so for us – to work through us despite our faults and shortcomings. Trust Him!
Lastly, He calls us to be fishers of men as well. How can we “catch a lot of fish” for Jesus? First, we must be people of prayer. If we don’t make time for prayer – for LISTENING- to God each day, we will be ineffective at best. We need to allow time to be filled. Also, we need to commit to reading scripture. St. Jerome said, “Ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ.” The bible is God’s love letter to us. We can’t truly know Him without reading His Word. Frequent the sacraments, as it is from them that we get all of the grace needed to be good apostles for Christ. Finally, we need to simply give ourselves to Him to be used as instruments. Live your life for Him, and He will work through you to bring others to Himself.
“Preach the gospel at all times, and when necessary use words.” (thought to be the words of St. Francis)
Have a blessed Sunday!