Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.” As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the sea—for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, “Follow me and I will make you fish for people.” And immediately they left their nets and followed him. As he went a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John, who were in their boat mending the nets. Immediately he called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men, and followed him.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved. http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translation
Jesus’ first words in Mark’s Gospel are startling, like a 5:00 am wake-up call: “This is the time of fulfillment. The Kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the Gospel.” There is no hesitation or hedging of bets.
The seemingly instantaneous responses of Simon, Andrew, James and John suggest that they sensed Jesus’ earnestness and urgency and could not say no. Notice that Jesus does not tell them to stop doing what they know; he invites them to see their livelihood through his “kingdom vision.” They are still fishers, but now, they are fishers of people.
As we enter into ordinary time, we are invited to see our daily “casting of nets” in a different way, through Jesus’ “kingdom vision.” How might Jesus be calling me to this “kingdom vision” today? This week? Beyond?
—Dan Finucane teaches theology and coordinates Campus Ministry activities at St. Louis University High School in St. Louis MO.
Lord, send me where you would have me,
To a village or heart of the city;
I will remember that you are with me.
O Lord, in my eyes you were gazing;
Kindly smiling, my name you were saying:
All I treasured I have left on the sand there;
Close to you, I will find other seas.
—Cesareo Gabarain, Pescador de Hombres, transl. Willard Jabusch, © 1979, OCP Publications, Inc.