Daily Reflection – 5/13/19
Jesus said: “Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever does not enter a sheepfold through the gate but climbs over elsewhere is a thief and a robber. But whoever enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens it for him, and the sheep hear his voice, as he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has driven out all his own, he walks ahead of them, and the sheep follow him, because they recognize his voice. But they will not follow a stranger; they will run away from him, because they do not recognize the voice of strangers.” Although Jesus used this figure of speech, they did not realize what he was trying to tell them. So Jesus said again, “Amen, amen, I say to you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the gate. Whoever enters through me will be saved, and will come in and go out and find pasture. A thief comes only to steal and slaughter and destroy; I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly.( John 10:1-10)
What comforting words we hear in today’s Gospel. God’s reminder of His care for us always. Our job is simple, we need to listen to His voice and follow Him as a sheep follows a shepherd.
This image was one that I enjoyed spending time with and then transposing the theme to current day situations in my life. We as humans do, for the most part, like to know where the lines are; the boundaries in our life and world. What lines should we not cross? Which ones are optional? Knowing the rules and how to best follow them allows us to live with a certain level of peace and security.
Jesus certainly seemed to understand that His followers (and therefore humans in general) needed this assurance as well. Yet, it took Him several attempts to ensure they were understanding the message behind his story. He repeated the key and central points a minimum of 3 times in this passage.
There is no one on the face of the planet who would consciously choose to be frustrated and miserable. Yet how is it that so many people unconsciously choose to be, or are missing the boat on what makes life worthwhile? Jesus is the gate! If we truly want to fulfill our deepest human aspirations, we have to know and love Jesus Christ. As long as Jesus is second to anything or anyone in our life, we have not fully passed through the gate. Taking the plunge and truly passing through the gate is the best decision we could ever make.
If we don’t go through the gate, we are vulnerable. Those who are not fully committed may find the offers of strangers quite enticing. But Christ’s sheep reject those voices out of fidelity to their Shepherd. Perseverance in our faith and a genuine lifestyle that flows from our faith requires a constant effort to refocus on the Lord. Even if we are besieged by a cacophony of competing voices, the voice of the Lord will always rise above that din. We must be faithful. Our prayer life is that privileged place to screen out the noise and truly hear Christ, which is why our prayer is the most important time of the day.
Prayer of The Day
Lord have mercy on us, Christ have mercy on us, Lord have mercy on us, “take our minds and think through them, take our lips and speak through them, take our hearts and set them on fire; for the sake of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Amen.
Your Shepherd calls you by name to bring you life, life to the full—not full of earthly success, wealth, happiness, or fame, but real life, life with God, life in his flock, life under his care, life filled with the peace of forgiveness, life filled with the hope of heaven, life filled with the joy of salvation. “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” That’s your Shepherd’s voice. Know it well.