Thursday, January 19, 2012

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Today’s text

Mark 1:14-18

After John had been arrested, Jesus went into Galilee. There he proclaimed the gospel from God saying, 'The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is close at hand. Repent, and believe the gospel.' As he was walking along by the Lake of Galilee he saw Simon and Simon's brother Andrew casting a net in the lake -- for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, 'Come after me and I will make you into fishers of people.' And immediately they left their boats and followed him.


I think it was your smile. That was why they came … immediately.

These words say nothing about your mood, Jesus. They offer no descriptions of the look on your face as you spoke. But I see you, and I see a smile.

Joy flashes through you as you invite these men to follow you into a new way of seeing and being, into the reality you hunger to reveal--the rule of the God who loves all that is made … and me.

I can’t know why these first followers dropped what they were doing to follow you. But I feel your joy. I see your joy, a smile. Physical pleasure passes through you as you invite your first followers to come and see what you are all about.

I know a gentle joy as your words roll around in my head, and I imagine the scene by the lake. It is just before dawn. A new day is about to break. You walk by, asking these common souls to follow along and to see it, to have their minds and hearts awakened to a radiant vision of God’s loving desire for every living thing.

You invite them to open their eyes to see and trust that this reality is near. It will change them. No longer will they look at world as a place of struggle for daily bread, a veil of contradictions and disappointments in which you are on your own, where the best you can do is to maximize your pleasures.

This is not life, not living. Living is to see the Incomprehensible One pouring the divine soul into the narrowness of earth, into the confines of human hearts, into ordinary and otherwise forgettable moments. The Loving Mystery who is God is near, coming to fill all that is with all that he is.

Repent of your tarnished and cramped vision of life and trust that it is true. Come, follow and see. Your mind will expand; your heart will grow a few new rooms where hope and love can breathe. You will find the reason you are alive.

Little wonder you smiled Jesus. You knew, you saw, you felt the kingdom of God’s rule. It filled you. So invited them to come, see and learn to live.

I have no idea what those fishermen saw in the moment you called them. But I see and feel your joy, your smile, and I know what draws me and why I arrive at Sunday worship with joy.

I want to know what is behind your smile. I want to see what you saw and feel what you felt as you invited them to follow. I want a piece of the joy that flashes through you as you invite them to come along for the ride. I want a piece of this for myself, and I know … you are only too glad to share it.

Pr. David L. Miller