Gospel Reading: Matthew 4:18-23
At that time, as Jesus walked by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon who is called Peter and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Immediately they left their nets and followed him. And going on from there he saw two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee and John his brother, in the boat with Zebedee their father, mending their nets, and he called them. Immediately they left their boat and their father, and followed Him. And he went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and preaching the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every infirmity among the people.
A short reflection
In the passage we hear about Jesus encountering the fishermen, Peter and Andrew. He says to them, "Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.". Jesus’ words to Peter and Andrew here were a call to action. He did not simply tell them to believe in Him. Instead, he calls them to act, to change and to move.
The words “to follow” in Greek translate to “akoulotho”, and appear eighty times in the gospels. In these situations, Christ does not ask the question, “Can you please follow”, instead He commands it. By calling them to “follow Him”, the disciples are honoured by this command.
Christ not only calls His disciples to “follow Him”, but He calls each of us. ‘Akolouthia’ is the Greek word for ‘worship service.’ Hence, one of the main ways we follow God is to worship Him. In this way, He calls us to actively participate in the life of our Church, and to focus on developing our relationship with Him. Christ calls us to not only say, “I believe”, but, as He called the disciples, He also calls us to act, to move, and to change.
Source: St George Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago