Jesus revealed himself again to his disciples at the Sea of Tiberias. (Jn 1:1a)
Today’s Gospel has always fascinated me because it is such an insight into our human nature.
Jesus had been taken from His followers. He had been tried, convicted, killed on a cross, and placed in a tomb. It was over. His disciples were sure that they would never see Him again. They had very little inkling of resurrection.
Even though Jesus taught them much and challenged them to change their lives, in His absence, they started to drift back to their former ways of life.
In the Gospel, we hear Peter announce to his friends, “I’m going fishing.”
It sounds rather innocent; however, when we remember that Peter had been a fisherman before being called by the Lord, we can see that he may have been entertaining thoughts about going back to his former way of life. The fishing excursion was not merely a morning out, it was a return to the old ways.
His friends indicated that they would join him as well.
It was at that moment that they encountered the Risen Lord. It was a “deja vu” type of moment since what happened to them had happened when they were first called: they caught nothing, a stranger told them to cast their nets out for a catch, they listened, they caught so many fish that their nets were at the point of tearing.
At that point in time, they recognized Jesus and they rushed to Him. He reinforced His call to them and brought them, once more, to focus on the mission entrusted to them.
We, too, often go back. There are times in our lives when Jesus comes in. The moment may be spectacular. It may be a life-changing moment. However, as time goes on, we find ourselves wearying of the journey. We find that we cannot see the Lord as clearly as we had in the past. We succumb to the temptation to return to our former way of life. As we know, that usually does nothing but get us into trouble.
Do not look back.
Do not go back.
The Lord is risen.
FAITH ACTION: Take time to do a review of your life for the past several months or couple of years. Do you see areas where you have drifted from the Lord and gone back to ways that are less productive to your spiritual growth? Make a plan to change your ways in order to return to a deeper relationship with God.