The Daily Prayer of the Church continues today with the Gospel according to John where Jesus tells us that He is the Good Shepherd:
So again Jesus said to them, ‘Very truly, I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who came before me are thieves and bandits; but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the gate. Whoever enters by me will be saved, and will come in and go out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.
‘I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand, who is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away—and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. The hired hand runs away because a hired hand does not care for the sheep. I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father. And I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd. For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life in order to take it up again. (Jn. 10: 7-17)
You and I are well aware of the thief that comes only to steal, kill and destroy. Not one of us has been spared the death dealing effects of evil. At first, evil is alluring; evil peddles its shiny wares. Once we are in deep, we experience how shallow it all is. But the Good Shepherd is there to offer protection, safety and life. Jesus, the Good Shepherd, does that at a great personal cost. Jesus’ ultimate act as the Good Shepherd was his laying down his life for you and me on the cross. Jesus did that so that you and I can “have life, and have it abundantly” as we live into His Resurrection.
Let us pray: O God, whose Son Jesus is the good shepherd of your people; Grant that when we hear his voice we may know him who calls us each by name, and follow where he leads; who, with you and the Holy Spirit, lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Thursday, 16 January, the Seaside Seniors will have their monthly lunch at Sutton Hall at St. Augustine’s.
Please remember everyone on our Prayer List, especially Karen.
Your servant in Christ,
Fr. Chester J. Makowski+
St. Augustine of Hippo Episcopal Church
Galveston, Texas 77550