Mark 1: 16-20 (NRSVA)
16 As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake—for they were fishermen. 17 And Jesus said to them, ‘Follow me and I will make you fish for people.’ 18 And immediately they left their nets and followed him. 19 As he went a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John, who were in their boat mending the nets. 20 Immediately he called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men, and followed him.
I am fairly convinced that I would not have acted like Simon, Andrew, James and John. I very much doubt I would have “immediately” left all I knew to follow a person who said weird stuff like, “I will make you fish for people”. Perhaps they had much more background information about Jesus than we are offered in Mark’s Gospel; maybe this was not the first time they had seen or heard from Jesus. Even so, this was uncharted territory for these men, and I admire their bravery.
Which makes me wonder: when do we lose our sense of immediate curiosity? When do we stop responding to strange, new things with openhearted inquisitiveness and start, instead, to worry about the consequences of taking any kind of action? How much more responsive might we be to the hurt and injustices in our world if we remained fiercely curious about their root causes, rather than dealing unsympathetically with the symptoms?
It is easy to come up with glib answers
to the ingrained inequalities and injustices all around us;
yet such answers serve neither us,
or our world,
Inflame our hearts with the Spirit of Wisdom
which ignites curiosity and kindles compassion,
for our neighbours,
for those we perceive as enemies.