A very interesting story of Jesus with his friends. He saw Simon and his brother Andrew fishing. He called to them and told them that he wanted them to join him. They agreed – They were called.
One story that is not told that the men certainly did come immediately. They had commitments to their families. I am sure that they had to make arrangements for them to survive and strive.
It is important to always remember that we are not called by God in a vacuum. God would not ask any of us to leave our family or abandon our responsibilities. God's call is always reasonable. God's call does not want us to hurt our loved ones. God's call is a mutual call of the person and family members.
When God calls us, God does it repeatedly, continuously, and directly. Last week when we heard about Samuel listening to God's call, it took three times of asking before Samuel, with Eli's help, to know it was God speaking. Since last week have you made an effort to hear God calling? Listening takes patience, practice, and time. Zebedee and his brother, John, in this Gospel, had the advantage of Jesus speaking as a live person. His call to them was directly heard and they followed. I am sure that they, too, made arrangements for their family members to get matters in order or to join the other men and women who were asked directly to follow Jesus.
How can we do what Jesus wants when we are in a family, have a job, and have to pay the bills? What can we do?
I have thought of some ways that we can do the will of Jesus without leaving home. These suggestions include:
1. Pray intentionally for certain people or situations when they come to mind.
2. Be grateful for people in your family when they try to be patient and kind, and when they give you heartfelt advice and direction. They love you and want the best for you.
3. When you are sick, or in a bad mood, or when you want to be left alone, allow family and friends to reach out to you and care about. You might be giving others their chance to minister to you.
4. Think outside of the small box each of us lives in. Is there a local state, national, or international opportunity to help others. Send mail, call people in Congress – believe me, they need our advice- sponsor a child or open your mind to places that God wants you to connect with
Jesus asks us to be open to doing God's will. We will not be asked to move. We will not be asked to sell our possessions. We will not be asked to hurt family members. Usually we will never be asked to do something that is a major disruption in our lives. But, if we are called to do such things, God will be with us all the way. Never fear as God called the fisher people in the past, God is calling us now, in 2018.
Be open and wait.
Be open and listen.
Be open to act.