Welcoming the Holy

Here we invite you to take time for yourself in personal prayer. The following spiritual reflection offers words and images which we hope will evoke for you an experience of God. 


 

January 21, 2018
3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

 

Prayer

Your ways, O God, make known to me; teach me your paths, Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my savior. Amen. (Psalm 25: 4-5)

 

Scripture

Mark 1: 14 - 20

After John had been arrested, Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God: "This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel." 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. He walked along a little farther and saw James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John. They too were in a boat mending their nets. Then he called them. So they left their father Zebedee in the boat along with the hired men and followed him.
 

 

 

Reflection

The time of fulfillment is now. Let us leave our nets and follow. This is the call of this weekend’s Gospel. There are two parts to this passage that I believe are important to keep before us. The first is the immediacy of God’s call to us. Now is the time. Sometimes when I sense God’s call, I would prefer to put it aside or ignore it, believe that God will call again and then it will be a better time for me to respond. I can have many excuses that seem quite understandable and legitimate in my eyes. Perhaps I have a health issue or someone I love is experiencing a difficulty. Maybe I have just moved or changed jobs and getting my bearings seems to be all I can handle. Also, there are times when several of these factors are at work in my life all at once and I am having trouble keeping it all in balance. When I sense God’s invitation at times like these I want to say back to God, “Are you kidding me? I need your help now, not another assignment!”
We must never forget that God’s call to discipleship is always situated in God’s promise to be with us everywhere in every situation. Let us pray for ourselves and for one another that we might live confident in this promise.
God persists. God wants to be a priority, the priority in our lives. God has created each of us out of God’s abundant love and God wants us to be people who love deeply, beginning with and returning to our love relationship with God. I believe that when I hear God’s call and respond as generously as I am able, the other struggles and busyness of my life get put in proper perspective. Also, I don’t usually find that God’s call is in opposition to the other aspects of my life. If I listen carefully, I realize that God may be asking me to look at a task differently or to re-prioritize. God knows the reality of our lives far better than we do. As disciples of Jesus, we are called to give our lives (in their entirety) over to God and to trust that God will guide us and be present to us all along the way.

We must never forget that God’s call to discipleship is always situated in God’s promise to be with us everywhere in every situation. Let us pray for ourselves and for one another that we might live confident in this promise.

 
 

For Your Own Reflection

Why do you follow Jesus? What traits make you a good disciple?

 
 
 

Closing Prayer

I am the Light of the world, says our God; whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life. Amen. (Communion Antiphon)