Federico Gomez is the regional change management specialist in Habitat for Humanity International’s Latin America and the Caribbean office. He is located in San José, Costa Rica. Read his Advent reflection below:
“Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” At once they left their nets and followed him. -Matthew 4:19-20
It could have been a day like any other in the life of Simon and Andrew. They threw their nets again and again into the Sea of Galilee and toiled in their work to bring sustenance to their homes. Perhaps they had woken up exhausted from the previous day’s chores and were facing the usual tasks of the new day again. Focused on the urgent, as often happens to us, they spent the hours surviving in routine.
But that day was not just any day on the shore of the Sea of Galilee. That day Jesus changed their lives forever. That day He looked them in the eye and invited them to follow Him. I can assure you that their hearts burst with joy, and they were filled with passion because they immediately stopped what they were doing and followed Him without hesitation.
Today, unlike Simon and Andrew who were suddenly called by Jesus, we have the season of Advent, which gives us the opportunity to prepare ourselves to meet Him. The season invites us to get out of everyday life and stop to reflect on the call that He makes to us and on the promise we made to follow Him without conditions.
And like He did with Simon and Andrew, He calls us to make a radical change in our lives. To question what we do routinely and become aware of whether it is enough.
Why? Because today, as we seek to put God’s love into action, we realize that more and more people need a decent place to live. Because, in trying to demonstrate the love of Jesus Christ, we humbly become aware of all that remains to be done. And today, as Simon and Andrew did, we must arm ourselves with courage to get out of our daily routine and act head-on to change lives and transform communities.
Like Simon and Andrew, we can be sure that Jesus will accompany us along the way. He will teach us and guide us. He will not leave us alone. He will strengthen us, and He will light our way. I invite you to let go of your nets, as Simon and Andrew did, and trust in the new path to achieve the greatest potential of our ministry.
Lord Jesus, You who came into the world and called us by name, give us strength to let go of the nets of our routine work and help us find new ways to reach more and more people every day. Inspire in us what we can do differently to achieve what You have called us to do. Multiply our efforts and guide us on our way so that, trusting in Your presence, we can more strongly promote dignity and hope through housing. Amen.