The trouble is that we want the kingdom but not the reforming. Its like those who want the elected office, but not the campaign; who want the meal, but not the cooking; who want the grades but not the study; health but not exercise, the salary but not the work.
We want to know the rule of God in our life, forgiveness and growth in grace, the sense of belonging to a spiritual community, the peace of being united to God’s will—but we don’t want to give up the nets; the entanglements that trap us, that hold us back. These entanglements are not the responsibilities we have in our life because those can be ways of serving the Lord. Rather these entanglements are the people and the relationships that distance ourselves from Christ.
We don’t want to give up gossiping, cutting corners, wrong relationships, immoral behaviour, habits of arrogance, rash judgement or addictions. So, we try to find methods to have it both ways and we can’t. Those nets weigh us down and hold us tight. To know the kingdom of God in our life we have to be willing to leave behind those nets, the distorting entanglements of soul and heart and mind.
The Gospel shows us the ones who left their nets and followed as Jesus gave them a new mission, new seas to sail, deeper purpose for their lives. For us, to follow Jesus is not a matter of leaving family, jobs or residence. It’s a matter of leaving behind a way of living, and that is far more difficult.