Homily for the 5th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year C (3)

Homily for the 5th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year C

Theme: We are unworthy in the presence of God

By:  Rev Fr Stephen ‘Dayo Osinkoya

Homily for Sunday February 6 2022


Isaiah 6:1-2a, 3-8
Psalm 138
1 Corinthians 15:1-11
Luke 5:1-11

Beloved in Christ, our liturgy today calls us to reflect on our unworthiness. In the presence of God’s awesome holiness, we discover our own unworthiness. This is the theme resonating in our first and the gospel readings.

Despite our unworthiness, we have been called and chosen to bear witness to the gospel -through God’s grace that is at work in us. Hence, the awareness of our frailty and unworthiness should make us abandon ourselves the more to God’s care. It is God who sanctifies and makes us worthy.

Today’s Gospel marks a turning point in the relationship between Jesus and Peter. In today’s Gospel, Jesus teaches from Simon’s boat. Jesus turns to Simon and instructs him about where to lower the fishing nets. Simon and others have been fishing throughout the night and have not caught anything. Simon protests, claiming that such an effort would be futile. Perhaps he was right to protest as he was a professional fisherman. But he ultimately obeys Jesus and lowers his nets into the deeper water as directed. Notice here that Peter calls Jesus by the title “master.” He already recognizes Jesus as a person of authority, acknowledging his own inferiority.

One important lesson from this encounter between Jesus and Peter is: that we have failed in an endeavour does not mean others cannot succeed in the same endeavour. Or that we have been used to doing things in certain ways doesn’t mean doing it in another way would not record the desired result. The only way to face life is with the belief that “with God all things are possible,” and then live our lives while depending on Him.

The forces of darkness are at work against us. They inflict us with pride. This is why in writing his letter to the Christians of Ephesus, St. Paul wrote: “For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness, with the evil spirits in the heavens…” He was reminding those citizens of Ephesus that we are dealing with immense forces in our world, forces that seemingly seek to beset us and destroy us by destroying our spirits, corrupting our souls.

If we admit our unworthiness before God, we stand to gain a lot more. Even when we consider ourselves failures, another opportunity is always given to us. So we should never give up on ourselves despite our unworthiness. The great Jewish prophet Isaiah was, like Simon Peter, given a window of opportunity in the midst of failure. He took the opportunity and said: “Here I am Lord, send me.” Peter, having confessed that he was sinner, heard Jesus respond: “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be a fisher of men.” Peter responded to the challenge, the opportunity, and became the chief of the apostles.

Beloved in Christ, God seeks to use us for His glory, let us surrender ourselves to Him and enjoy the transformation that comes with it.

*Rev Fr Stephen ‘Dayo Osinkoya*

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