St. Matthew's Episcopal Church Maple Glen, Pennsylvania

Readings and Reflections for the Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany

The call of the prophet Isaiah in chapter 6 takes place in response to a vision in which Isaiah sees the throne of God.  The contrast between the holiness and glory of the divine presence and his own not so holy and glorious existence overwhelms him.  He feels lost, but he is claimed, restored, and called by the mercy of God, invited to become part of God’s work to restore the world.

Luke tells us of a time Jesus sends fisherman out for an unlikely catch of fish that has overwhelming success.  This “catch” prepares the fisherman for their call to “fish for people” which was equally unpromising on the surface, yet also wildly successful.
Paul tells the Corinthians of his calling “as to one untimely born”  …and as a most unlikely apostle who initially persecuted Christians. Yet the bottom line is clear – it is the grace of God – God’s own good will and purpose – that is at work in and through him.
Comment:  It is easy to identify with Isaiah, Paul, and those fisherman who followed Jesus.  I am well aware of how much I lack in faith, love, and readiness to serve the Lord.  How unlikely a disciple I am! But it seems God’s way of working has not changed. The unholy in me is addressed and cleansed. The opponent to Christ in me is turned around into an advocate by sheer good grace. As unlikely as it seems, I am sent by God to catch people up into the nets of God’s loving purpose.  This is the good news of God at work!
David S. Robinson, Rector
Saint Matthew’s Episcopal Church
Maple Glen, PA 19002