Tuesday, May 1, 2012

“What people have the capacity to choose, they have the ability to change”

The challenge that is already with us is the temptation to accept as true freedom what in reality is only a new form of slavery - Pope John Paul II

Gospel text (Jn 10,1-10):
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."

Today our Gospel reading reminds us of why we need Jesus.

We must remember that Jesus is our gate into heaven. You cannot enter heaven just because you had 40 hours of service hours last month or because you have a long list of good deeds you've done throughout the years. The one and only way to get to heaven is through Jesus Christ. He says that whoever enters through him will be saved; let us keep this in mind as we go about our day today, and give thanks for the opportunity to live with him eternally.

So here is a question to ponder: How do we follow Him? “Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him. Whoever does not love me does not keep my words…(Jn 14:23-24)

Of the words of Jesus in today’s gospel, I would suggest paying deeper attention to the following: «I am the Good Shepherd. I know my own sheep and my own sheep know me» (Jn 10:14); even more so, «The sheep hear his voice (...) and the sheep follow him for they know his voice» (Jn 10:3-4).

It is true Jesus knows us, but, can we also say we know Him? 

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