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Lenten Devotions from Fourth Presbyterian Church

Wednesday, July 8, 2020  

Today’s Scripture Reading  |  Mark 1:14–20

Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.” As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the sea—for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, “Follow me and I will make you fish for people.” And immediately they left their nets and followed him. As he went a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John, who were in their boat mending the nets. Immediately he called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men, and followed him. (NRSV)

I’ve always found the imagery of the fishermen laying down their nets compelling and almost comforting. For most of my life, I have felt the pressure to know exactly what came next, and what came after that, ad nauseum. It seemed I was supposed to know where I’d go to college, what I’d major in, and what my career would be before I was old enough to drive a car. But knowing those kinds of things has never come naturally to me and still doesn’t. 

While that not-knowing can be terrifying, I think it has opened me up to some of the most profound spiritual experiences in my life. Perhaps if I had it all planned out, I wouldn’t have taken the trip to Raleigh, North Carolina, that opened my eyes to the grave injustices of the world. I might not have experienced the beauty of living in Atlanta. I probably wouldn’t now be doing work that I love in Chicago. I’m not sure I knew it then, but maybe in each of those not-knowing times I was actually laying down my net. 

God, grant me the courage to embrace the not-knowing and lay down my net. Amen. 

Written by Allie Green, Director, Urban Youth Mission

Reflection and Prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church

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