The Lord is my light and my salvation

God often gives us a “wake-up call”. We can’t replace it with the name of the person next to us.

God calls me and God calls you. What matters is how we respond.

Like the disciples each of us is called. The problem is we sometimes miss that call. We miss it because we don’t expect it. When it comes, we don’t recognize it. That yearning, that whisper that maybe there’s something more to life than we’re experiencing: that’s a call. The feeling that this choice is one we need to make; that we could make a difference if we did this: that’s a call. The suffering or pain of another that

God helps us see or hear that invites us to respond: that’s a call. The event or circumstance that moves us in a new direction or towards a new relationship: that’s a call.

To be a disciple of Jesus is to be fully engaged in the ministry and mission of the Church. That mission can take the shape of witness and evangelism and the verbal sharing of the gospel. It can also mean acts of mercy to the vulnerable, care for the ill, and on-going faithfulness to our everyday responsibilities. It can mean public acts of protest and the confrontation of systems and persons that work against justice for all God’s people. It can lead us to accept a new challenge or take on a task, which seems daunting and even a bit foolish.

To be a disciple of Jesus means reading the newspaper and asking, “What does God need me to do about this problem?” It means looking at our Church and community with the question, “How does God want to use me?” It means going to school or work or play and saying, “How can God be present through me today with the people that I meet?” It means getting up each morning and praying, “God show me how you will use me today?” Those are “call questions”. Disciples are always asking them.

To be a disciple of Jesus is to follow the promptings of our heart and the leading of God’s Spirit.

Those four fishermen had no idea what would happen or where or to whom their journey would take them when they accepted Jesus’ invitation. It was an act of faith. It was only in the going and doing that they could learn how right their choice was. It’s that way for us also. This is not a story about us.

This is a story about God, and about God’s ability not only to call us but to create us a people who are able to follow. God also creates in us the faith to respond. God makes of us a people who are able to do what God needs us to do. It’s never a matter of our greatness or goodness or our lack of it. It’s a matter of God’s grace. There’s never a lack of that grace. It’s always more than sufficient. That means we don’t have to be afraid to answer when our call comes. We don’t have to hold back for fear that God will ask us to do more than we’re able. We don’t have to worry about failure or about the outcome.

We don’t have to be limited by our own resources or abilities.

As one saying puts it: “God doesn’t just call the qualified; God qualifies the called.”

When God calls us, God provides what’s necessary. The question of faith in this story isn’t whether we’re strong enough, wise enough or brave enough to be a disciple. It’s whether we trust that God is able to make us one. It’s whether we’ll take hold of the opportunities God gives us to serve, reach out and do his work. Whether it’s an act of piety or a work of mercy, whether it’s right where we are or across the world, we have a call. God give us the courage to hear, discern and answer it.

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