Newsletter for Sunday 21 January 2018

19 Jan

God is Calling You

In the First Reading today from the Old Testament, we hear how God told Jonah to go to Nineveh to call the Ninevites to repentance because they had been leading very sinful lives. Jonah didn’t want to go there because he was afraid the Ninevites might kill him!  However, he eventually went, and upon hearing God’s word announced to them, they responded immediately and changed their ways. This is the main point – on hearing God’s word, they responded straight away, immediately.  This theme is also in today’s Gospel.  Our Lord went to Galilee and called Peter, James and John. They heard the call, dropped everything and followed Him immediately.

So could somebody reading this now be experiencing a similar call from God to follow Him in a radical way as a priest, a brother or a sister?  The call might be less dramatic, but God can still be calling you.  Peter and Andrew were fishermen and they were older men.  But they still left their businesses and followed JESUS.  God can call at any age.  And even if you are younger – you might even still be at school – God could be calling you too.  Many of the saints knew they had a calling from a young age.  But whatever our age, there will no doubt always be a bit of fear involved of putting out into the deep.  We can be a bit like Jonah – we hear God’s call but are afraid of the challenge because we feel we are unworthy or somehow inadequate for the task. But have no fear.  If you are generous enough to offer yourself to God in this way, He will give you all the help you need.  And even if you discover this is not what you are called to, God will surely reward you for having made Him the offer.

However, all of us, by virtue of our Baptism and Confirmation are anointed to bring Christ into the world.  In this sense we all share in the Priesthood of Jesus Christ.  So  Our Lord is asking all of us to answer His call, change our lives where necessary, and follow Him ever more closely.  The moment we begin to change our own lives, we have already begun to change the world.  What is God asking of you?

Fr Paul Gillham IC

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