November 30, 2016 – Wednesday in the 1st Week of Advent

Saint for the day: Andrew, Apostle (died:60?)

Scripture Readings for today’s Liturgy:

Romans 10:9-18    –    Psalm 19    –    Matthew 5:18-22

“Andrew told his brother Simon: We have found the Messiah, the Christ, and he brought him to Jesus.” (Today’s Communion Antiphon: John 1:41-42.)

My first prayer this morning included this verse, “Jesus Christ is the Light of the Apostles. Come let us walk in his way.” That short phrase seems to wrap up all that it means to be an apostle. The Gospel continues on this theme and states, “they dropped their nets (they were fishermen) and followed Him.” That has to mean that there was something about Jesus: some visible, comprehensible reality that allowed them to drop everything and follow after Him. I have to ask myself, “What would it take for me to drop everything I had and thought important in my life to follow someone I just met. I think that this Gospel seeks to let us see that Jesus was already displaying His connection with God. This might even be considered a “pre-transfiguration” scene and, instead of saying, “Lord it is good for us to be here …” they say nothing but “follow him immediately!” They didn’t just stay where they were but moved out of their comfort zone.

So, we are back to square one: this encounter with Jesus. But it doesn’t just end there. Even though Simon Peter and Andrew, along with James and John “left all” and followed Him that wasn’t the end of their lives. There would still be some ups and downs. Some trials and difficulties – “will you also leave me?” Jesus says and their answer: “Where else can we go. You have the words of eternal life.” Ah, Ha! Here we are back to that basic question that was the apostles foundation stone: “where else can we go?”

Unless we have encountered Jesus – face to face – in a way that compels us to drop everything – we will never be satisfied. Notice, too, that there is never any more mention of going back to their fishing. So there must have been a deep change in their lives that allowed them to follow this stranger. Amen!

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