Following and Fishing

During the season of Epiphany, we explore week by week what the Christ-child, whose birth we celebrated at Christmas, means to the world.  Who is this Jesus, the one we find today calling disciples? What was it about him, that inspired them to leave their everyday lives and to follow him on an unknown journey?

‘Follow me’, Jesus tells them, and you will fish for people.  ‘Fishing’ for people is a tricky metaphor that reminds us of the very worst aspects of evangelism, but at the heart of it, it reminds us that Jesus isn’t calling people to an introverted, self-interested religion, that is only about me and my own private spirituality.  Following Jesus always has an evangelistic, outward focus.  Focussing on others, and sharing the good news of Jesus Christ with them is the other side of the coin to ‘following’.  When we take this on board, we will find ways to draw our friends and neighbours into the Kingdom, because that is our calling as the people of God.  We will have the courage to share the good news with them whenever we can. In a difficult world, where people are struggling to keep their heads above water, and where relationships between nations, communities and families are constantly breaking down, Jesus is both present and knowable.  

What a message this is for a world still struggling with the impact of COVID and economic catastrophe, a world consumed by fear and anxiety.  Our task is to share this good news in whatever way we can, and wherever we can.  That is how we become salt and light and a voice of hope in a dark world.

In peace, Mother Lynda