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Thursday of the Twenty-second Week in Ordinary Time, September 7, 2023

Gospel Lk 5:1-11

While the crowd was pressing in on Jesus and listening to the word of God, he was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret. He saw two boats there alongside the lake; the fishermen had disembarked and were washing their nets. Getting into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, he asked him to put out a short distance from the shore. Then he sat down and taught the crowds from the boat. After he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, "Put out into deep water and lower your nets for a catch." Simon said in reply, "Master, we have worked hard all night and have caught nothing, but at your command I will lower the nets." When they had done this, they caught a great number of fish and their nets were tearing. They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come to help them. They came and filled both boats so that the boats were in danger of sinking. When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at the knees of Jesus and said, "Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man." For astonishment at the catch of fish they had made seized him and all those with him, and likewise James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners of Simon. Jesus said to Simon, "Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men." When they brought their boats to the shore, they left everything and followed him.


When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at the knees of Jesus and said,"Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man."

For astonishment at the catch of fish they had made seized him

What happened here in this passage? To me, this was a personal encounter with Jesus on another level, a personal level. Fishing was what Peter did for a living. He knew what he was doing. There was no way they were going to catch fish. This was Peter's aha moment.

Have you ever had an aha moment? What happens in that moment? Is it a sudden burst of clarity that goes shooting through your mind?

Can you imagine doing your job with people you know, and having Jesus with you. The reality that most of us are not aware of on a daily basis, is that Jesus really is with us.

Saint Francis de Sales wrote a book called "Introduction to the Devout Life". In Chapter 9 of this book, it gives the first meditation. "Firstly, place yourself in the Presence of God. Second, ask Him to inspire your heart." Then, there are three Considerations, and then Affections and Resolutions and lastly a conclusion. When I went to the Sacrament of Confession one day, the priest asked me to read Saint Francis de Sales' urgings to place myself in the presence of God. And to humble myself before His Presence. This seems like an easy thing to do, and I did it for the few days to follow. However, the easier thing is to forget to keep placing myself in the Presence of God. Because when you place yourself in God's Presence, you are face to face with the truth.

This was a few years ago, but this passage where Simon Peter realizes that he is in the Presence of God and he falls to his knees reminded me of this practice.

So what can we do to help nurture our relationship with Jesus? I think the answer for me is to pray and keep trying to remember, Jesus is right there with me.

What will you do?


PAPA Foundation
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