Thursday of the Twenty-second Week in Ordinary Time
Jesus was a carpenter, not a fisherman. So when He tells Simon to put out into deep water and lower his nets for a catch, it makes sense that the Fisherman would tell Jesus, essentially, “We’ve been out here all night and nothing has worked.”
However, Simon also said, “…but at your command I will lower the nets.” In other words “I will trust you; I will obey you.”
And it makes all the difference. Even though what Jesus was asking of Simon made no sense to the seasoned fisherman, even though putting back out and lowering the nets in deep water would be laborious, he trusted and obeyed. What made him listen to this strange rabbi? Only God and Simon know, but what we see regardless is the power of faith.
In our own pride we sometimes feel we know better than the Church or even better than God what our needs are, what we are capable of, what is true. We are expert “fishermen” and God and His Church are anything but. We rationalize our sins, we see ourselves as exceptions to the rule because we know our circumstances better than anyone else. So when we encounter some teaching of the Church that challenges us, or when we feel God inviting us to go out into the deep water, to trust Him in some way we never have, we might refuse, or at least be tempted to do so. Yet Simon today shows us the result of trusting God, even when we believe, in our own pride or short-sightedness, that God, that the Church is being unreasonable, or do not know what they are talking about.
But the One who created us knows us well, and knows well everything happening in our lives. He knows of what we are capable, and He knows how difficult our lives can be, “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weakness, but one who has similarly been tested in every way, yet without sin,” (Hebrews 4:15).