The first recorded word that Jesus speaks in public is ‘Repent.’ Repentance means a change of heart – a change in the direction of our lives. Jesus calls his disciples to centre their lives on him. For the fishermen, Simon and Andrew, James and John, Jesus’ call means a complete change of direction. They leave their nets to follow Jesus and fish for people – calling disciples to follow the Lord.
What might it mean for us to answer Jesus’ call? He calls us to repent, too. Repentance might mean giving up selfishness, letting go of jealousy, forgiving those who may have hurt us. Repentance is not easy, but it is possible with God’s grace. Like the first disciples, Jesus is calling us, not to try to be someone we are not, but to be fully ourselves – fully alive in the love of God. The coming of the kingdom of heaven is Good News – news of mercy and forgiveness.