(Matt. 4, 18-23)
He who straightway responds to God’s call
“And immediately they left the boat and their father, and followed him” (Matt. 4, 22). Christ calls his disciples so that they might follow him and certainly as the evangelist says, that they may do so “straightway”, immediately, and without any delay. This “straightway” has a great deal of importance in the spiritual life. The soul which decides to follow Christ, and not follow itself, struggles to be free from everything, from its possessions, even from its precious self and to follow Christ.
And this characteristic is observed in the Christ-loving soul that has decided to follow him: “straightway”, i.e., immediately it gets and understands what the will of God is. The moment the soul gets this, it delays in nothing. Delaying -in order to ponder and see -could certainly be due primarily to inexperience; the man is inexperienced, and does not know what to do. Deep down, however, the delay comes from the fact that someone is not free from himself and for that reason wants first to think things through by himself: in order not to do something in a way that would upset him, or provoke him, since deep down he has his own will. That is, someone wants to follow God, to be subject to Christ, but not however to go against his own will.
And so, he who straightway responds to God’s call– to whatever this call may be –he it is who precisely does not do his own will, but rather does the will of Christ; and through this he will progress. There are souls that each time God shows that he wants this and not that, they show their attentiveness. They have the disposition to “straightway” and immediately say “may it be blessed’’, my God: may it be as you will”. And, due to this they are raised up, blessed, and experience joy. As for the other souls, that do not respond “straightway”, certainly, their struggle is not lost, but they are not able to advance, since increasingly they delay.
Holy Hesychasterion “The Nativity of Theotokos” Publications.
Archimandrite Symeon Kragiopoulos
Call of the disciples. 2nd Sunday of Matthew