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Thursday, September 4, 2008

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1 Corinthians 3:18-23
Psalm 24
Luke 5:1-11

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fresh fish

"Amazement at the catch...seized him." —Luke 5:9

Jesus gave Peter a preview of the great harvest of souls in the huge catch of fish. Peter was amazed at the size of the catch and amazed at Jesus (Lk 5:9). Peter's personal encounter with Jesus was the critical beginning of his ministry. Each of us desperately needs an "encounter with the living Jesus Christ" (Church in America, Pope John Paul II, 3). A personal relationship with Jesus is the foundation of our Christian life (1 Cor 3:11). Everything we do flows from this encounter with the crucified and risen Jesus.

However, Peter's amazement wasn't strong enough to endure the cross, and he denied Jesus three times. Even after Jesus appeared personally to Him after He rose from the dead, Peter still vacillated. Not long after meeting the risen Jesus, Peter decided to go back to catching fish instead of men (see Jn 21:3). Peter went stale. He lost his freshness. In His mercy, Jesus gave Peter a repeat of their first encounter, right down to the huge catch of fish (Jn 21:6). Finally, Peter received the Holy Spirit at Pentecost and stayed fresh till the end of his life.

Have you personally encountered the living Jesus? That's one goal of this Scriptural booklet (see Lk 24:32). If not, ask Jesus to reveal Himself to you. Then "receive the Holy Spirit" (Jn 20:22), Who keeps you fresh and new in Jesus. Receive the Eucharist daily or as often as possible. If you ask Him, Jesus will give you a "Eucharistic amazement" to keep you fresh (Ecclesia de Eucharistia, Pope John Paul II, 6). Lead others to be caught up into an eternity of amazement with Jesus.

Prayer:  Father, may I, and all I meet, encounter Jesus, know Him personally (Phil 3:10), and remain in Him (Jn 15:4).

Promise:  "Do not be afraid. From now on you will be catching men." —Lk 5:10

Praise:  When feeling discouraged and stale, Melinda remembers the scripture, "The favors of the Lord are not exhausted" (Lam 3:22), and her love of Jesus is renewed.

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 25, 2008

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