Thursday, September 07, 2017

“Do Not Fear, Cast Deep” by Beth DeCristofaro

“…[W]e do not cease praying for you and asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of God's will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord.”  (Colossians 1: 9-10)

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. … When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at the knees of Jesus and said, "Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man." … Jesus said to Simon, "Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men."  (Luke 5:4-6, 8, 10)

“Perfection, Perfection”
(“I will walk the way of perfection.” Psalm 101:2)
I have had it with perfection.
I have packed my bags,
I am out of here.

As certain as rain
will make you wet,
perfection will do you

It droppeth not as dew
upon the summer grass
to give liberty and green

Perfection straineth out
the quality of mercy,
withers rapture at its

Before the battle is half begun,
cold probity thinks
it can’t be won, concedes the

I’ve handed in my notice,
given back my keys,
signed my severance check, I

Hints I could have taken:
Even the perfect chiseled form of
Michelangelo’s radiant David

the Venus de Milo
has no arms,
the Liberty Bell is
  (Kilian McDonnell, OSB, from Swift Lord You are Not, 2003)[i]

Do you have a friend who seems to do everything with ease and just fabulously? Don’t we say about such folks “I just hate her!”  Peter, in Luke’s story, doesn’t seem to have that aura!  He chafes but something within him calls for a sincere response to Jesus’ command. At the same time, he knows how limited he is. And Jesus doesn’t hate him. Jesus invites him to cast deeper. Follow me, Jesus says, into depths you cannot today envision on a journey you cannot predict and to an end, you cannot even comprehend at this moment. Jesus invited an incredibly imperfect man, and subsequently many others, to a personal and private walk with God. Do Not Be Afraid!

How many opportunities have I missed because of my fear? I fear not belonging. I fear being wrong. I fear losing my status. I fear standing out from the crowd. I fear. Today, fall to your knees and offer a fear to Jesus. Ask Him to help you cast deep today, then move consciously through your day and take opportunities to put out into deep water and lower your nets. Act without fear and travel deeper with God rather than let rip currents of fear float your life.

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