Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,
This coming Sunday, the Fourth Sunday of Easter is also known as "Good Shepherd Sunday" because we hear Psalm 23 and Jesus' story about shepherds, sheep, and his voice.
I'm sure many of you remember the old, familiar image, and a powerful image that for nearly a century illustrated what was once a new, amazing reality. The Radio Corporation of America, or "RCA," created a lasting logo: it is the figure of a dog sitting before a Victrola record player, staring in wonder at the speaker. The caption tells it all: "He hears his master's voice."
While in the Middle East on one of my filming trips while in the Navy, I came upon several shepherds whose flocks had intermingled while drinking water from a brook. After an exchange of greetings, one of the shepherds turned toward the sheep and called out, "Manah. Manah. Manah." (Manah means, "follow me" in Arabic.) Immediately his sheep separated themselves from the rest and followed him.
Then one of the two remaining shepherds called out, "Manah. Manah." and his sheep left the common flock to follow him. After watching in amazement I asked the third shepherd, If I could try. When I called "Manah, Manah" The sheep did not respond. Not even a look over their shoulder or a slight turn of the head.
I then asked if the sheep ever respond to another's voice and he replied, "Oh yes, "sometimes a sheep gets sick, and then it will follow anyone."
We have all seen it, haven't we? People, young and old, even ourselves, who are "sick." Battered by the storms of life and distracted by voices urging us to go this way and that, they have lost their bearings and they don't know where they are or where they are going. That can be more than a little frightening; it leads to despair, to hopelessness.
Do we know our Shepherd's voice? Do you, do we know with whom we belong?
Blessings, Peace, Joy, & Hope,
All Saints Messenger >