Father Steven Reilly, LC
My sheep hear my voice;
I know them, and they follow me. I give
them eternal life, and they shall never perish. No one
can take them out of my hand. My Father,
who has given them to me, is greater than
all, and no one can take them out of the
Father´s hand. The Father and I are one."
Prayer: Lord, we continue celebrating the joy of
Easter. This meditation is a privileged moment to experience this
happiness. I offer you my faith and devotion.
Petition: Lord, help me to realize that I am known
and loved infinitely!
1. God Is Not a Watchmaker: Philosophers
and scientists of the Enlightenment were enthralled with Reason. They
looked at the universe and saw logic and law,
and they likened God to an expert watchmaker. He
had created a Rolex of a universe and was now
contentedly allowing his creation to run its course. The
perfect and implacable laws of physics had freed him
from the cares of creation — a visit to his
celestial office would reveal a vacationing God “gone fishing.”
This deistic notion of God is not the God
we worship. Our God is an ever-present God, intimately
concerned about his children. He has not forgotten about the
world. He is not far away. He became man
and even when his time came to leave this world,
he devised a way to remain with us. Could
God get any closer than being truly present within
us through the Eucharist? He shows infinite intensity in the
focus of his love. Anyone who threatens the sheep
of this loving God does so at his own risk:
“No one can take them out of the Father’s
2. Knowing the Sheep: This loving Father has a Son
who is the perfect reflection of his being: “The
Father and I are one.” The Son is a shepherd
whose love, like the Father’s, is intense and personal:
“I know [my sheep].” Human categories don’t do the
divine reality justice. The human shepherd, after all, would be
hard pressed to think of his sheep as individuals.
When he looks at them, he sees a flock.
When he speaks about them, the same word “sheep” will
work both as singular and plural. But Jesus is
the Shepherd unlike any human shepherd, just as his
Father is the Creator unlike any human watchmaker. For Jesus,
each sheep is an individual, loved with a unique
love. When you come to Christ, you don’t need
to wear a nametag. He knows your name!
3. Doing Our
Part: If Jesus is the Shepherd unlike any human shepherd,
we should be sheep unlike any typical wool-covered mammals.
Their ardor for the next tuft of grass is
such that the voice of the shepherd hardly suffices to
keep them in the flock. Barking dogs are an
essential element to good flock maintenance. But Christ’s sheep
don’t need that kind of coercion. In prayer we “hear
[his] voice.” May we never tire of belonging to
the blessed flock of Christ! May we always listen
and heed his voice.
Conversation with Christ: Lord, you
are my Shepherd. With you, there is nothing I
shall want. I will always keep my eyes fixed on
your rod and staff. My courage will never falter
if you are at my side.
Resolution: I will
show spiritual leadership in my family today.