Sunday, January 22, 2012

Abandoned and Followed

January 22, 2012

Third Sunday in Ordinary Time 2012 B

By Rev. Joe McCloskey, SJ

When God saw by their actions how they turned from their evil way, he repented of the evil that he had threatened to do to them; he did not carry it out. Jonah 3:10

As he passed by the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting their nets into the sea; they were fishermen. Jesus said to them, "Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men." Then they abandoned their nets and followed him. Mark 1:16-17


Our piety gives us the encouragement to say what needs to be said in our world gone crazy. It takes courage to say what we think people are not ready to hear. Piety is where we find the courage to take a risk for Christ. The gifts of the Holy Spirit are the makeup of piety. Wisdom, knowledge, counsel and understanding are the how the spirit touches our minds. Piety, fortitude and fear of the Lord are the gifts that influence our hearts as we put ourselves in front of the crowd and take the risks that the prophets took in their willingness to point out what was wrong with their world. Jesus came proclaiming the Gospel of God. Jesus chose the men of the sea for his first disciples. They were brothers and men that had more to say with hard work than with their learning. They were men of action.


We live in a time when things are changing rapidly. People all over the world can be reached by computers in their various forms. Good news can be had by all if we are not afraid to put ourselves out there in fiber space to be heard in the name of Christ. We have a world that is passing away in its present form and we have to allow the message of Christ to catch up to our world. Jonah was heard even when he tried to run away from the Lord. We have to stop apologizing for the Lord using us and rejoice in whatever we have a chance to do for the Lord. We study the ways of the Lord even as we allow the Lord to teach us his ways. If we are humble enough, he guides us to justice by teaching us his way of doing things.


We need to call our friends to join us in the work of the Lord. There are so many things that we can only do by trying. If we limit ourselves to what we are already doing, we lose the messages of the good news of the Lord. We are never too old or too young to be the messengers of the Lord. We must never be too proud to ask the help of each other. How many people to we fail to ask because we think they are too busy. Who can be too busy for the work of the Lord? Even as Simon and Andrew and James and John followed Christ, We need to disentangle ourselves from our business with things of our world to follow the Christ who will make us fishers of men. We need to direct our attention to the work of the Lord.

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