The Gospel Today
Feast of Saints Simon and Jude, Apostles
Jesus went up to the mountain to pray,
and he spent the night in prayer to God.
When day came, he called his disciples to himself,
and from them he chose Twelve, whom he also named Apostles:
Simon, whom he named Peter, and his brother Andrew,
James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew,
Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus,
Simon who was called a Zealot,
and Judas the son of James,
and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.
Reflection (Sem. Eric Yabut)
Jesus never stops calling us to be His disciples. As a matter of fact, He calls us as often as He can. If you will hear Jesus calling you, what will be your response? Some of us are afraid of God’s invitation to be in His banquet, maybe because of the consequences and sacrifices involved in the call.
This happened to me when I was not yet a seminarian. I used to pray after my work duty. I was alone in our apartment and would find myself in a mode of prayer. I prayed intensely, something that I had not done before. There were questions in me which brought me to deep reflection.
“What is my purpose?” I was serving in a lay community before but I was not contented in the way I gave my services. From that moment on, I started to discern again to pursue my vocation, to pursue the calling that I for so long resisted. I was crying then, for I was afraid of the sacrifices I needed to do. I would give up my career, not being able to spend time with my family and friends as often as I could, and not being able to get married.
Amazingly, God surprised me as I answered His call. In the seminary I was led to become more prayerful, more studious, and more faithful and obedient to Him. Following Jesus Christ was the best thing and decision that I have made and will not regret for the rest of my life.
In the case of the disciples, at first there was a frightening thought in their minds but they trusted Jesus that nothing would go wrong as long as they entrusted themselves to the person who called them – Jesus. I felt the same way, too.
Do not be afraid if God is calling you. It is a reminder for us to look at our dear Jesus Christ hanging on the cross. He was not afraid in giving up His own life for our salvation. Jesus knows the consequences and the sacrifices that He would be facing in pursuing the will of His Father.
Maybe you are not called to the same vocation, but I believe Jesus loves you so much and He is inviting you to repent and believe in Him. Be not afraid to follow His will for you. Time runs fast; now is the right time for you to act and follow Him. Believe in Him and entrust your life to Him.