Gospel: John 10: 27-30
The image of the Good Shepherd is one that has been been popular for generations. Most Christians will have been given a picture of Jesus surrounded by sheep, holding a young lamb in His arms.
Even in our day, when so few of us have anything to do with farming, there is something appealing in the idea of being looked after with such tenderness
- by one who goes out of His way to find the one independent-minded - but silly - sheep that goes off and gets lost - and rejoices when He finds it
- who said that He would give His life for us - and did
- and who, today, says that He knows all His sheep, that He gives them eternal life and that, with Him as their shepherd, they will never be lost.
It is little wonder that this image has endured so well.
For many people life is hard-going and the idea of being able to lean on Jesus is one that holds many attractions.
Our time and culture have made us reluctant to be so dependent on anyone. We feel that we have to carve out our own path - look after ourselves. And yet, somewhere deep inside us is that part of us that would like to be held like the little lamb - protected and looked after.
We probably would not admit it - even to ourselves - but images donít survive unless they speak to something deep inside people - however strong and powerful they may seem...
What does it
mean for me?
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