A reading from the holy Gospel according to John 21:1-19
"At that time, Jesus revealed himself again to his disciples at the Sea of Tiberias. He revealed himself in this way. Together were Simon Peter, Thomas called Didymus, Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, Zebedee's sons, and two others of his disciples. Simon Peter said to them, "I am going fishing." They said to to him, "We also will come with you." So they went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing. When it was already dawn, Jesus was standing on the shore; but the disciples did not realize that it was Jesus. Jesus said to them, "Children, have you caught anything to eat?" They answered him, "No." so he said to them, "Cast the net over the right side of the boat and you will find something." So they cast it, and were not able to pull it in because of the number of fish. So the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, "It is the Lord." When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he tucked in his garment, for he was lightly clad, and jumped into the sea. The other disciple came in the boat, for they were not far from shore, only about a hundred yards, dragging the net with the fish. When they climbed out on shore, they saw a charcoal fire with fish on it and bread. Jesus said to them, "Bring some of the fish you just caught." So Simon Peter went over and dragged the net ashore full of one hundred fifty-three large fish. Even though there were so many, the net was not torn. Jesus said to them, "Come, have breakfast." And none of the disciples dared to ask him. "Who are you?" because they realized it was the Lord. Jesus came over and took the bread and gave it to them, and in like manner the fish. This was now the third time Jesus was revealed to his disciples after being raised from the dead.
When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?" Simon Peter answered him, "Yes, Lord, you know that I love you." Jesus said to him, "Feed my lambs." He then said to Simon Peter a second time, "Simon, son of John, do you love me?" Simon Peter answered him, "Yes, Lord you know that I love you." Jesus said to him, "Tend my sheep." Jesus said to him the third time, "Simon, son of John, do you love me?" Peter was distressed that Jesus had said to him a third time, "Do you love me?" and he said to him, "Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you." Jesus said to him, "Feed my sheep. Amen, amen, I say to you, when you were younger, you used to dress yourself and go where you wanted; but when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go." He said this signifying by what kind of death he would glorify God. And when he had said this, he said to him, "Follow me." The Gospel of the Lord
+Let us Pray: Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of the faithful and enkindle in them, the fire of Your Love. Send forth your Spirit O Lord, and renew the face of the earth. Amen+
This passage is so full of lessons for us as disciples, perhaps one of the great lessons is; how to "recognize the Lord" when 'He comes.' The Gospel begins: "He revealed himself in this way." Lesson 1; there is 'a way' that the Lord comes to us. His manner of revealing Himself to each one of us, is very personal and He will use 'this way' again and again, so that we become "familiar" in recognizing; "it is the Lord." Let us look at John; John picks up on the lesson quickly- he recognizes and says with conviction; "It is the Lord." This conviction is 'born' from 'encounter.' He knows the Presence of the Lord by what is happening, and by what is going on inside his heart and soul. Take some time and pray and talk to Jesus, ask him to show you, where and how He has revealed Himself to you, recently and in the past. Listen, wait on Him, He will show you. He will bring to mind maybe a memory or something that happened just recently. Jesus wants us to recognize Him as He reveals Himself to us, in the moments of our daily life, because when we become aware; "it is the Lord", it changes everything!
Secondly, go by the fire, where Jesus is, early in the morning. Listen, to the many conversations going on around the fire. There is no pretense here, all is pretty simple and basic and real, and very human. Listen to Jesus as he talks to the disciples and then as He turns to ask this question of Simon Peter: "Do you love me more than these?" Watch Jesus, and watch Peter. The conversation that very shortly prior was a conversation for everyone, now has become very personal, close, intense and tender. That burning fire before them, only feet away, is but a symbol of Peters heart right now, burning with love for our Lord. The question asked by our Lord, now ignites Peter's heart and he responds; "Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you." The honest words spoken from his heart also liberate him , as truth does. He acknowledges there is nothing he is holding back now, no thoughts, desires, fears-nothing is held in secret, all is out and exposed, all is 'known' to Jesus, even his sins, he is totally open and vulnerable with Jesus, now it's different now he just 'loves.' Peter discovers himself by loving. The image of the fire, perhaps also reflects the "greater fire" that Peter is close to, the fire of Love and Metcy in the Heart of Our Lord, who is close to him. Be with Jesus and allow Jesus to ask you; "Do you love me more than_______"
Let us pray: Lord, I love you increase my faith, fill my heart with the fire of loving you. Amen