Daily Reflection – May 7, 2017
Sunday 7 May 2017
First Reading: Acts 2:14A, 36-41
The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
Psalm 23: 1-3A, 3B4, 5, 6
Second Reading: 1 Peter 2:20B-25
Gospel Reading: John 10:1-10
Today’s Note: Fourth Sunday of Easter
“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 the shepherd 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,
the Pharisees 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.”
They were cut to the heart. (Acts 2:37)
Here it was, Peter’s very first sermon, and what did he say? He preached the heart of the gospel message. He spoke about Jesus—how he performed miracles, how he was put to death, and how he rose from the dead for our salvation. Then he brought everything to a grand conclusion: “God has made both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified” (Acts 2:36). Luke tells us that when the people heard these words, they were “cut to the heart” (2:37).
We all know what it means to be cut to the heart. We see or hear something stirring, and we feel moved to do something about it right away. It’s like the way we feel when we hear about a family that has tragically lost a loved one. We feel very sad for that family. Our pierced hearts go out to them, and we feel moved to treasure our own family even more.
Can any message cut us to the heart more dramatically than the gospel? What can compare to the story of a God who loves us so much that he sent his only Son to rescue us from sin—at the cost of his own life? What can compare to hearing that we have the hope of eternal life if we just turn from sin and turn to Jesus?
Whether we are at peace with God or not, whether we are full of faith or weakened by doubts, whether we feel confident in life or overwhelmed by our challenges, recalling this message has the power to touch us and move us closer to Jesus.
Why? Because the gospel message helps us to see our lives from a heavenly perspective. It tells us that we are destined for something wonderful. It moves us to try a little harder to be pleasing to the Lord.
So make a promise today: “I will never let a day go by without remembering and trusting in the good news that ‘God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life’” (John 3:16).
“Come, Holy Spirit; fill my heart and my mind with the gospel message. Move me to do whatever you ask.”