Monday of the First Week in Ordinary Time
The new life
After John had been arrested, Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God: “This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.” As he passed by the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting their nets into the sea; they were fishermen. Jesus said to them, “Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Then they abandoned their nets and followed him. He walked along a little farther and saw James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John. They too were in a boat mending their nets. Then he called them. So they left their father Zebedee in the boat along with the hired men and followed him.Mk 1,14-20
In the first verses of the today gospel passage we meet some key expressions, about which we have to ponder, to grasp the deep meaning which they contain. The first is: “This is the time of fulfillment”. It means that the time for the waiting is over, that the proper moment to decide is matured. It may be the beginning of our adventure of life, or, if we are wrong in our decision, it may be the definitive hindrance of our life plan. There are unique and unrepeatable moments, which the life and the history present to us, in which it is necessary to have the quickness to get up and to go. The second is: “The kingdom of God is at hand”. It means that the yearning for a different life, which everyone carries in his heart, is nearing its achievement. The time has come for the justice, the freedom, the peace, the abundance, the fidelity, the truth, the love, the joy and the brotherhood. It is the real content of the message of the gospel, it is the proclamation of the Church. The third is: “Convert yourselves”. This word shows us the steps we must take to enter the new kingdom.It is necessary to forget our past and to start a new life. It means to guide our path towards a new direction, to trow away what is old and costomary in us to go towards a new way of thinking, of feeling, of working and of living. The fourth is “Believe in the gospel”. This expression announces the next step to be done: to believe that the new life is present in the person of Jesus Christ. The following verses, which present the firsts call of Jesus, show in concrete terms what means to believe in the gospel. These are two scenes structured in the same way: Jesus passes by, calls and the disciples leave everything and follow him. It is an exodus from the old life to the new one of the Kingdom: new thoughts, new feelings, new interests, new hopes. A different capacity to love and to forgive is born in the heart: a joy which has no equal.