The Good News for the day, April 6, 2018

Friday in the Octave of Easter (265)

Jesus revealed himself to his disciples again at the Sea of Tiberias.  He revealed himself this way: The crew: Simon Peter, Thomas (“Didymus”), Nathanael (from Cana, Galilee), Zebedee’s boys, and two more of his disciples. Simon Peter invites them: “I’m going fishing.” They tell him: “We ‘ll come along.” They did—they went out, got into the boat, but all night they didn’t catch anything. At the break of day there was, Jesus standing on the shore; the disciples had no idea it was Jesus. Jesus says to them, “You young people, have you caught something to eat?” They answered him, “Nope.” So, he said to them, “Throw the net down the right side of the boat—you’ll find something.” So, they threw it there—and couldn’t haul it in because there were so many fish. The disciple Jesus loved says to Peter, “It is Our Leader.” When Simon Peter heard it was the Leader, he tucked in his garment (he did not have much clothing on) and jumped into the water. The other disciples came along in the boat—they weren’t that far from shore, a couple of hundred yards, pulling the net full of fish. As they scrambled out onto shore, they see a little campfire with some fish on it and some bread. Jesus says to them, “Bring over some of the fish you just caught.” So, Simon Peter went over and heaved the net ashore full of 153 big fish. (Even though there were so many, the net didn’t rip open.) Jesus says to them, “Come on, have some breakfast.” Well, none of the disciples dared ask him, “Who are you?” aware it was The Leader. Jesus approached the fire, took the bread and gave it to them—and the fish, too. This was now the third time Jesus was revealed to his followers—now raised from among dead people. (John 21)

All these appearances make no sense until you get the bigger picture. Jesus appears not when called or invoked; He appears—is recognized in ordinary helpfulness.

The tale has the men resuming their careers—going back to their lives as fishermen. They are still together—still a “crew”—a group, a community. They don’t know what else to do! Perhaps this is the most magical moment of all the moments of Resurrection. They see “Our Lord-Leader-Model” in this stranger who sees the dark water where the fish are, helps the tired fisherman catch their gigantic haul, fixes breakfast, and chats (and goes away).

In your ordinary daily life—you too can see the Risen Lord in kindness of strangers. It is His New Life that shares food (the breakfast for the Family!!!), the courageous selflessness of simple kindness. It is a magical Jesus across the table from you.  

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