Sunday, February 04, 2007

In light of all that...

Luke 5: 1-11

Since we are now firmly ensconced in the season of Epiphany, our celebrant this morning asked us to hear the Gospel reading with epiphany light. Luke's version of Simon's call to be an apostle is much more detailed than the stories of the other Gospelers, and she went on to elaborate on the theme of his epiphany in this well-known story.

She talked about the unspoken questions in this encounter... questions Jesus will eventually ask out loud... Who do you say I am? Who are you in relationship with me? How will the answer affect your life? All excellent questions for anyone who professes Jesus as Lord, but especially in this case for Simon, his brother and their friends.

We can read Simon-(soon-to-be)-Peter's answers: He recognizes Jesus, not just as his rabbi, but as Lord. He recognizes himself as "a sinful man", unworthy of the relationship. And he accepts the offer to leave everything and follow the relationship. It may have been the huge catch of fish that captured his attention, but as our celebrant explained, Jesus was the one fishing that day, not Simon.

After possibly the largest haul of fish in his career, Simon dropped his nets. He quit while he was ahead, some might say. But whether he himself understood it fully at the time, he certainly came to realize that material success was worth next to nothing in the new light of other possibilities. What other possibilities will be open to us, once we drop the ways of this world that confine us? Where will our own epiphanies shed new light?

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