Tomorrow is the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time. In the Gospel reading, we will read Christ’s call to the first four apostles. (See Gospel of Mark 1:14-20.)
Two sets of brothers, Simon (who is named Peter) and his brother Andrew, James and his brother John were the first to be called by Jesus. In this Gospel passage, the evangelist Mark gives us a brief snapshot of this call narrative. All four men, fishermen by trade, are working in or around their boats as Jesus passes by. He calls them, and they immediately follow him.
One of the sisters shares her reflection on today’s Gospel:
The fascination that surrounds the person of Jesus conquers their hearts. They do not hesitate to follow him. They are leaving behind what is most significant in their lives: their families, homes, and livelihoods. The fishing business of Zebedee, the father of James and John, must have been doing fairly well for him to have hired men.
Jesus still calls disciples today. Those invited to priesthood and religious life feel the call to follow Christ in a life of discipleship, and leave everything behind to follow him. But God’s call is not only for priests and religious; it reaches each of us. At some point, Jesus passes through our life and attracts us to him.
As it happened with the apostles, Christ usually comes to meet us in the most ordinary places. He called the apostles out of their fishing boats, while they were doing their daily work. He may call me, in the ordinary places of my life, to a deeper relationship with him.
His call often involves sacrifice. Like the four apostles who left family and a lucrative business, I may be invited to let go of things I hold dear. This is the cost of discipleship. But the reward and the joy of being with Christ will far surpass anything I may have forfeited.
For more reflections from the Daughters of St. Paul on the Daily Gospels, check out Ordinary Grace.