May 7, 2017
In this week’s Gospel Jesus reveals his mission, his purpose, the reason why he came into the world, “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” (John 10:10b) This is truly good news in a world of scarcity, a world of survival, a world filled with too many “have nots.” God has come into the world that all might have access to the things that make for abundant life, that all might know the joy of living with purpose, and that all might rest assured of having “daily bread.” This is God’s dream for the world, God’s dream for everyone! This is shalom, the all encompassing peace of God, the very Kingdom of God. And to this end Jesus declares, “I am the door, or the gate for the sheep.” (John 10:7)
A door is most simply defined by Webster as, “a movable piece of wood, glass, or metal that swings or slides open and shut so that people can enter or leave a room, building, vehicle, etc.” In the context of this week’s gospel reading it is the gate of a sheep pen. So it is that Jesus becomes the means by which we pass from this fallen world, through liminal space, and into life abundant. As we move “in, with, and through” Christ we move from the ordinary into the extraordinary.
If Jesus is a door, perhaps being in a relationship with Jesus means using that door, both going in and going out! Responding to the voice of the Good Shepherd that invites us inside and then sends us back outside. We go in to be filled and we go out to empty our self in service to others; we go in to partake of the sacraments and we go out to feed the hungry and give water to those who thirst; we go in to pray the Lord’s Prayer and we go out to do our part, to live out “thy kingdom come, thy will be done.” To live life abundantly is to eagerly go in the door that is Christ and then to boldly go back out the door as Christ for the world!
“Blessed shall you be when you come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out.” (Deuteronomy 28:6)
As you go your way, may God go with you
As you go your way, wherever you may go
May God go before you to show you the way
May God go behind you to encourage you every day
Beside you as friend
Above to watch over
And within to give you peace
In the name of the Father, in the name of the Son
In the name of the Spirit, in the name of love
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