Refelction for Monday 30th November 2020

The Rev’d Derek Arnold

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READING Matthew 4.18-22 (NIV)

As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” At once they left their nets and followed him.

Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them, and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.

REFLECTION

Can you imagine getting up with Andrew, Simon, James, and John and while it is still dark, walk down to the sea, with the anticipation of catching fish. It was a day like any other, they were fisherman, and this is what they did.

But in the midst of the familiar, the water, the nets, the fresh fish, the rough wood of boats, and the rhythmic motion of the waves. In the midst of all that made them who they were, a new beginning was about to take place.

Jesus turns up at the waterside. Today, old routines will become a thing of the past. Jesus looks out at these fishermen with their nets and their hard-earned catch of fish, and announces in a loud voice, “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.”

It is the next bit that I find quite astonishing. At once they left their boats and followed him. If it were me, I am sure I would be wondering about what I was leaving behind. And what kind of adventure was this man Jesus calling me to.

According to G. K. Chesterton, a writer, philosopher, and lay theologian to name just a few, said that “An adventure is, by its very nature, a thing that chooses us, not a thing that we choose.” While other rabbis wait for disciples to come to them. Jesus goes out and finds his own. And he looks, not among the likely candidates, the best and the brightest, but down at the docks, where he interrupts fishermen at work.

Discipleship is the great adventure. Most are taken away from predictable lives, the things that are familiar to us, and often say a lot about who we are, and we are plunged into something unpredictable, and like those first disciples, the complete opposite to what we know and are familiar with. But were these four men, Andrew, Simon, James, and John, actually ready and equipped for the adventure of discipleship and if called, are we?

THE COLLECT

Almighty God,
who gave such grace to your apostle Saint Andrew
that he readily obeyed the call of your Son Jesus Christ and brought his brother with him:
call us by your holy word,
and give us grace to follow you without delay
and to tell the good news of your kingdom;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
n the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.