Today's Scriptural Meditation Readings:
February 4, A.D. 2007
Scripture from today's Liturgy of the Word:
Isaiah 6:1-2a, 3-8
Psalm 138:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 7-8
1 Corinthians 15:1-11 or 15:3-8
A brief reflection on today's Scripture passages:
There are two central figures in this Sunday’s readings who feel totally unworthy of being chosen for special divine missions—Isaiah and Simon Peter. In today’s reading from the first chapters of Isaiah, the soon-to-be prophet is aware of his sinfulness as he experiences a vision of God on His throne about to make a decision. Whom will He send as His messenger to clean up the mess left by King Uzziah and bring the people back to fidelity? After one of the seraphim has touched a burning coal to his lips (that must have been painful!), Isaiah now feels worthy enough to cry out, “Here I am; send me!” What a dramatic scene!
The Gospel is just as dramatic. It portrays an unforgettable day on the Lake of Gennesaret. Simon Peter and his partners, James and John, are dead tired after a night of fruitless fishing. Jesus prevails on them to let Him use their boat as a pulpit. After Jesus has preached a while to those on the shore, He dares to ask these tired fishermen to try just once more. Simon must have thought, “He’s a good preacher, but He doesn’t know much about fishing!” However, Simon obeys, and puts out to the deep. To his amazement, the nets are filled to breaking with huge fish. In panic, Simon calls for help. Now two boats are in danger of capsizing as they carefully head for shore.
Like Isaiah, Simon feels unworthy. He falls on his knees, crying out, “Depart from me, O Lord, for I am a sinful man.” With amazing powers of persuasion, Jesus says to Simon Peter, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.” Even though they have a fish story they could tell for years, they leave a profession they know very well, for a life filled with uncertainty and danger. And not just Simon Peter, but his partners, James and John are willing to take the same risk.
God knows better than we do who will make good disciples. The wisdom of God often seems like foolishness to humans. Jesus that day issued an invitation. Simon Peter, James and John had trust enough to answer it! Our Church today needs more men and women to answer His call to the consecrated life and to the priesthood. He needs all of us to switch from our ideas of generous service to His!
- Msgr. Paul Whitmore
(pwhitmore29 at yahoo dot com)
February 4, 2007
The Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lives of the saints:
Full Scripture text from today's Liturgy of the Word:
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