February 4, 2007  5th Sunday   Year C

Isaiah 6:1-8
Luke 5:1-11

Like so much of Scripture, today's Gospel has 2 levels. The upper level is the ancient historical event, the lower and deeper level has a present day meaning for you and men. Please again read the Gospel, Luke 5:1-11.
God is at work in our everyday lives as we "wash our nets". He works in strange ways! He always works for our good and for our growth as humans and Christians.
Have you ever been, (or are you now) at a low ebb in your life?
As a spouse, as a parent, as a friend, at your school or at your work-place? (For me, as a priest). It is in these very depths that Jesus calls us: "Launch out into the deep, let down your nets" i.e.'Be brave, take a new step in life. Make a new start."
This challenge from Jesus may come by way of a friend's words, an experience something we read in a book or see on TV. This challenge to "launch out"(i.e. start again) may come in the midst of failure, rejection, sickness, loss of a loved one, a feeling of helplessness.
The challenge comes to different people, in different ways, but the challenge from our God surely comes. Be sensitive to this call, this challenge.
To answer the challenge scares us. We make excuses: "I labored all night and caught nothing." "Leave me alone Lord, I am a sinner." We realize that human courage is not enough to make this vital step to start again. We humans are so skilful at making excuses for not answering God's call. We are skilful at escaping!
And then if we quieten ourselves in prayer we will in some way hear the voice of the Lord who says in a living voice today to each of us "Fear not I am with you. Together let us launch out"
It is then that we can re-enter life and be fishers to our family and friends by giving them light in their darkness (to change metaphors!)
"Launch out into the deep, put down your nets. Fear not I am with you."

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