May 4, 2017
I hope you are well and I pray that you are happy. If you were driving down a side street in Tigard and you see a person going into a house through a side window, and not through the door, what would you do? You might think, oh the owner forgot his/her keys and drive on, or you might be safe and call the police because anyone who does not enter through the door probably is a robber or a thief.
Jesus enters through the door. He is the real thing. He is our Shepherd. Anyone else is not the real thing and might bring you temporary joy, but I can guarantee you, it will not last. Jesus calls his sheep and you and I hear his voice and we follow. False shepherds will only lead us astray.
Have you ever felt confused or lost, not sure where to go? A false prophet is self-centered and does not really care for people. False prophets hurt the sheep and scatter the flock. False leaders today, are individuals and institutions who say going to church is useless. False prophets proclaim that there is no Jesus. False teachers say, be free, live and be merry, for when you die it is over. Be very careful who you follow. Jesus says in our Gospel for this weekend: “All who came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them.” THE SHEEP DID NOT LISTEN TO THEM. There are leaders who take people away from God but claim to be their spiritual leaders. Today we even have cyber situations robbing people blind and creating fear and anxiety.
Jesus is the Shepherd who died for the sheep. There is not a self-centered bone in our true Shepherd. Jesus is for others. He is for you and me. We need to learn from our Shepherd. We have to stop trying to get through windows and follow the Shepherd through the front door. We also need to lead others in a way that gathers and not scatters.
If you want abundant life, then follow Jesus. If you want true peace, then follow Jesus. If you want to know true joy, then follow Jesus. If you want to live, then follow Jesus. Have a great week and be sure of my prayers.