To recognise a miracle we need a good dose of humility...

5th Sunday of the year – Year C

Is. 6:1-2a, 3-8; Psalm 137; 1 Cor. 15:1,11; Lq. 5:1-11

Read: Jesus was standing one day by the Lake of Gennesaret, with the crowd pressing around him listening to the Word of God. And he saw two boats close to the bank. The fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats – it was Simon’s – and asked him to put out a little from the shore. Then he sat down and taught the crowds from the boat.

When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon: “Put out into deep water and pay out your nets for a catch”. “Master”, Simon replied: “we worked hard all night long and caught nothing, but if you say so, I will pay out the nets”. And when they had done this, they netted such a huge number of fish that their nets started to tear; so they signalled to their companions in then other boat to come and help them. When they came, they filled the two boats to sinking point.

When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at the knees of Jesus saying: “Leave me Lord; I am a sinful man.” For he and all his companions were completely overcome by the catch they had made; so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were Simon’s partners. But Jesus said to Simon: “Do not be afraid; from now on it is men you will catch.” Then, bringing their boats back to land, they left everything and followed him.

Reflect: Peter and his companions were seasoned fishermen. This time, as throughout the night they had not caught anything, Peter felt disillusioned, disappointed. Jesus told Peter “Put out into deep water and pay out your nets for a catch”. Peter obeyed. He did not rely on his expertise, but placed his trust on the word of God: “as you say so”, so will I do. That day Peter acted wisely.  That day the catch of fish was so great that they filled two boats which were about to sink.

So as to recognise a miracle we need a good dose of humility. Whoever thinks that he knows everything and always is misguided. Man needs God. A Christian must be different from others …  he must go “fishing” as Peter did on that occasion relying on the Word of God. Many do not believe in miracles; precisely he believes only in their “fishing”. One needs to be courageous to say to Jesus: “since you say so, I will pay out the nets”. Peter said so. And with what result? He caught a great deal of fish.

Pray: Lord quieten us down from this run which has left us out of breath, and teach us how to rest a bit in You, to work at your pace, “fishing” when you so ask. Then the nets will be filled. Lord and we will not be working in vain.

Act: Today we say Peter’s renewal. Peter started looking in the right direction. The greatest miracle in this extract from today’s Gospel is not the catch of fish but the change of heart of those like Peter, James and John. Any you? “Do not wait to turn towards the Lord, and do not delay from day to day” (Sirach 15:6).

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