Fr. Ben’s homily for Thursday of the 22nd week in Ordinary Time Cycle I
Theme: PUT OUT INTO THE DEEP!
By: Ben Agbo (Rev Fr)
Homily for Thursday September 2 2021
* Col 1 : 9 – 14, Lk 5 : 1 – 11.
‘We toiled all night and caught nothing!’ This is the negative experience of many believers today. How do you feel when a good Christian tells you that he /she has done his /her best to succeed in life only to meet with failures?
‘At your word I will let down the nets’. This ushered in a new dispensation of success. What is this new dispensation when efforts are rewarded by success and when all obstacles from the dominion of darkness are taken over by the ‘kingdom of his beloved Sons?’. I don’t know exactly why Peter and his colleagues didn’t succeed after the all night toil but all I know is that at the behest of Jesus’ Word every obstacles cleared. But what is even more interesting about this story is that inspite of the bumper harvest of material prosperity, they left everything and followed him in their search for spiritual prosperity.
There are levels in life. The philosopher Soren Kierkegaard speaks about 3 stages; The Aesthetic stage when we do whatever we like, the Ethical stage when we do what the society expects of us and the Religious stage – the stage of the individual when we do only what we should do in relation to God. This is the stage of authentic existence. In Peter’s life it happened when Jesus took absolute control – not necessarily that Peter became perfect as a human being but he submitted more to be made no longer a fisherman but a fisher of men. We are called to make firm choices in relation to our occupational, professional and vocational life. What kind of job do you do for a living? What kind of trade /course did you study? What kind of vocation are you embracing; priestly, religious or married life? And with whom? Has Jesus said something about your vocation? If not, you may be taking the risk of toiling all night and catching nothing. You must be filled with the knowledge of God’s will – that is the religious stage that Peter came to which Christ is inviting all of us today.
Spiritual activity must precede worldly work. Prayer must go before we begin our daily toils. Success goes beyond our occupational and professional knowledge. We need the vocational knowledge to discern the will of God. Yes, he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Sons. It is a kingdom of success not of failure. When Christ enters our boat, there is always abundance because we can do all things when he strengthens us, Phil 4 : 13.
May God bless you today!