Evidence makes the case every time. We may remember the aroma from the oven that proved a match for the great taste and Mom could smile that her chocolate cake was a winner every time.
Or when the pigskin receiver breaks the plane and the ref raises both his arms, the fans can rightly roar approval as the late touchdown seals the win for their team.
Or when the facts about the case and the physical evidence is overwhelming, the jury renders its guilty verdict, and the prosecutor exults in victory.
These and other happenings are part of life on this great blue ball floating in the cosmos. Such is our life with Christ, or rather our life as committed Christians. We have seen the evidence; we are convinced; we are decidedly for Christ as Head and the Church as His Body on earth.
In today’s Gospel passage from Luke, fishing nets near to the point of sinking their boat at Christ’s command are all that Peter, James, John needed to follow Him. Of course, the immediacy may have taken a few days, in order for the men to settle their fishing business affairs and make things right with their spouses and children. But that does not weaken Luke’s point that the change was quick and decisive.
One could argue that their decision was prompted by the logical conclusion that some kind of miracle was in operation here and that Jesus was authentic. Otherwise it made no sense to cancel out a whole night’s effort that brought in no fish until the Man from Nazareth said to “put out into the deep water and lower your nets for a catch.”
It seems to me that some such miracle would be the only way that a son’s or daughter’s, sibling’s or friend’s long defection from the faith would easily turn around unless said persons get to believe the clear evidence Christ presented for Himself in the bible. Add to that how His followers have produced many saints that we know of and some we don’t. Of course prayer counts immensely in this situation, calling on Christ for His inestimable help.
It is a mistake to think that any person’s 12 or even 16 years of Catholic education could preclude such defections. Only the internal acceptance of Christ can do that, along with a certain maturity and life experience. Good example is a required supplement. The devil’s ways are often accepted as the norm these days by older adults. Besides, he is often too subtle and clever for the young. For example, they have no idea that internet porn can destroy any wholesome attitude toward sex and marriage.
A farmer once asked his neighbor if he might borrow a rope. “Sorry,” said the neighbor. “I’m using the rope to tie up my milk.” “Rope can’t tie up milk.” “I know,” replied the neighbor. “But when a person doesn’t want to do something, one reason is as good as another.”
Reading I: Isaiah 6: 1-2a, 3-8
The call narrative here underlines the prophet’s authenticity and justifies his teaching. That teaching may prove to be unpopular or even seditious.
Reading II: I Corinthians 15: 1-11, or 15: 3-8,11
Paul gives us here the very creed of the Church, meant as the authentication of himself as an apostle of the risen Lord Jesus.
The Gospel: Luke 5: 1-11
Jesus’ Kingdom teaching receives a positive response from Peter, James and John among others. Astonishment won the day and the three followed Jesus right away.