Put Out into Deep Water

by Fr. James Tarantino

Put out into deep water. The Word of God is living and effective in the life of the believer. The willingness to listen and place one's life at the Word's disposal is a fundamental requirement of faith. From the teaching of Vatican II, we learn that the "revelation of God to us is not merely a long–ago event that focuses on the role of those first apostles. We Catholics believe that while nothing essential is added to the content of revelation, nevertheless we continue even today to deepen our understanding of that unique revelation." God therefore speaks to His Church through the medium of Scripture and Tradition.

The Prophet Isaiah speaks, "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts! All the earth is filled with his glory." All believers in God are being invited and encouraged to accept and proclaim the holiness of God by how we live out our lives. We may not be totally worthy in all of our deeds to take on such a task. However, by God's grace, God offers us the opportunity and the strength to transform the world. This transformation can come about by how we live by the Word and how we live by the Eucharist in which we ourselves are transformed. St. Paul recognized the need for God's help to live by the Word of God. He revealed to the Corinthians that he was not perfect. He told them, "I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me has be been ineffective." St. Paul reminds us that we cannot accomplish on our own the Will of God. God's Will requires openness to grace. We need God's help to reach our goal of following Jesus and helping others do the same.

The goal for every believer is to do what Jesus says. As He told Simon Peter to "Put out into deep water" and lower the nets for a catch, so too we are being asked to go fishing into the deep areas of our lives and expect something to happen. God wants us to not be afraid to let others know that we are believers in the way of Jesus. God also wants us to know that He will grant us everything we need in order to be successful. He told His followers, "Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men. When they brought their boats to the shore, they left everything and followed him."

Those who are willing to display their faith in their everyday life will not be disappointed by the grace they will receive.

Fr. James T. Tarantino is the Liaison to the Archdiocese of San Francisco Catholic Charismatic Renewal and the Pastor to St. Hilary Parish in Tiburon, CA.

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