Sunday, February 07, 2010

5th Sunday After Epiphany

Pastor Joan has finished her sermon for the morning. Here is a piece of that sermon.
“If you hear the words personal conversion or personal Epiphany what image comes to mind?
The usual image is that of a Billy Graham type crusade. The invitation is give. People come down the aisle and kneel while somebody leads them in a prayer faith. At that moment many of them look up into the face of Jesus and move from unfaith to faith. They see the light of God breaking in through Him.
It is a great image of conversion.
It is not your typical conversion , of course but it is so right. It is clean, tidy, inb order and by the book.
My favorite picture of conversion is not like that at all.
It is not clean and neat. In fact it is smelly.
It follows a miracle that might not even be a miracle.
It takes place in a small fishing boat.
It ends up with the new believer up to his neck in fish.
He does not notice the fish. He does not smell the fish. He ses only Jesus.
In a moment everything has changed.
Coming back to shore he leaves his boat and catch behind and follow Jesus.
Conversion at its best.
I have to tell you I love this picture. It shows the power of God over everyday things.
This morning I invite you to make that leap of faith.
Let the power of God direct your life.
Leave the fish behind.

Today Liturgical Churches using the Common Lectionary will be celebrating the fifth Sunday after the Epiphany. The Gospel is Luke 5:1:11
Luke 5
1One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret,[a]with the people crowding around him and listening to the word of God, 2he saw at the water's edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. 3He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.
4When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, "Put out into deep water, and let down[b] the nets for a catch."
5Simon answered, "Master, we've worked hard all night and haven't caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets."
6When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. 7So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.
8When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus' knees and said, "Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!" 9For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, 10and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon's partners.
Then Jesus said to Simon, "Don't be afraid; from now on you will catch men." 11So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.
If you claim this morning to follow Jesus like Peter then your task is the last verse of the text.
You are to share the good news of Jesus with others.
Read the text
Think about it.


Blogger Elizabeth Mahlou said...

This is a good verse. Fr. Ed, like your Pastor Joan, gave a great homily on it at vespers tonight. Thanks for posting.

1:11 AM  
Blogger Nessa said...

I always found this passage fascinating. Letting go is very hard.

The Simple Things Challenge

2:57 AM  
Blogger Peter (Worldman): said...

It is nice to see that you are back and well.

3:36 AM  
Blogger Louisiana said...

I'm so grateful that you are alright. A world without you i don't want to know. You mean so much to so many far and dear. Thank you for being such a fighter. Pls, pls rest enough so that you may get strong and healthy again. Thank God for your little angel Betty, for her love and strength keeps you.
Want some news, shocking, amazing news? It's in my blog...i don't think its taking comments but that's not the important part as long as you read it...I'm hoping to somehow, somehow win the lottery for i would love to fly you guys over and ask you to perform 'it' you have to be strong and we have to pray for a good windfall lol...I'm on the hunt for your address again...I had it...When you can, if you can pls resend it to me via email if possible @ ...i know somewhere in there it is there lol...

Thank you for doing your sermon..A happy and rightful way to start the day, with my Dr. John's ....

God Bless you and Keep you well and able to breath.

You are much loved, every second of every minute of every hour of every day.....<3

5:54 AM  
Blogger rhymeswithplague said...

I am so glad you have recovered and that you have returned! When I left my last comment on the previous post I was hoping you would be strong enough to give us your Sunday posts if nothing else.

6:40 AM  
Blogger Mama Zen said...

Dr. John, I can't tell you how glad I am to see you this morning!

6:50 AM  
Blogger Melli said...

Ohhhhhh Pastor! It is SO good to see you back here this morning! When you said maybe Monday, I was HOPING maybe Sunday!

Sometimes I really wonder if I WOULD have the courage to leave EVERYTHING to follow Him... I think I'm fortunate that thus far He hasn't asked me to leave everything. And what He has asked me to leave, I've been more than happy to. But I can be such a Peter sometimes... of course, sometimes I'm happy to be a Peter... and other times I'm ashamed.

7:00 AM  
Blogger Sandi McBride said...

Yes, yours is the perfect picture...but in my heart I can hear Preacher Entzminger giving the invitational at my Grandmother's Baptist church, and my little Catholic heart hearing the call...of course I answered. It cost me nothing and has guided my life thru all the pitfalls and bumps...unscathed.


8:26 AM  
Blogger Thom said...

What a wonderful welcome surprise to have your sermons back. They are just wonderful. Welcome back my dear sweet friend :)

8:53 AM  
OpenID kcinnova said...

Dr. John, I am so glad to see that you posted this morning! Most especially since we are up to our necks... er, thighs... in snow. Cold, wet, beautiful snow.
I will sing praises as I go out to shovel, and I will consider what I am being asked to leave in order to follow.

10:14 AM  
Anonymous quilly said...

It is good to see you here again, Dr. John! Welcome back to your virtual church!

Today's verse and the following song had a major impact on me and sent me into the mission field twice.

Lord, You Have Come to the Lakeshore

1. Lord, you have come to the lakeshore
looking neither for wealthy nor wise ones.
You only asked me to follow humbly.

O Lord, with your eyes you have searched me,
kindly smiling, have spoken my name.
Now my boat's left on the shoreline behind me;
by your side I will seek other seas.

2. You know so well my possessions;
my boat carries no gold and no weapons;
But nets and fishes—my daily labor.
O Lord, with your eyes you have ...

3. You need my hands, full of caring,
through my labors to give others rest,
and constant love that keeps on loving.
O Lord, with your eyes you have ...

4. You, who have fished other oceans
ever longed-for by souls who are waiting,
my loving friend, as thus you call me.
O Lord, with your eyes you have ...

1:00 PM  
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Blogger Diana said...

Happy to see you back Dr. John!
Love Di

4:51 PM  
Blogger Jim said...

Who Dat! Who Dat! Who Dat! Who Dat! Who Dat! Who Dat! (N.O. Saints!)
Who Dat! Who Dat! Who Dat! Who Dat! Who Dat! Who Dat! (N.O. Saints!)

Welcome Back, Dr. John! You have been missed and prayed for a lot.
I am glad that Pastor Joan always delivers good sermons, todays is as good as it gets!

8:43 PM  
Blogger bettygram said...

Quilly: Dr. John did not get to go to church but,we sang your song.

9:01 PM  
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3:23 AM  
Blogger Finding Pam said...

Welcome back, Dr.John. A wonderful reminder of what it means to follow Christ.

5:47 AM  
Blogger A Lady's Life said...

Welcome back. Glad to see you up and at em..
Keep up the good work!!!

4:54 PM  
Blogger DawnTreader said...

I like your contrasting images of conversion/epiphany! (Mine was neither quite the Billy Graham nor the fishing boat kind.)

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