John 10:22-30 NRSVue
22At that time the Festival of the Dedication took place in Jerusalem. It was winter, 23and Jesus was walking in the temple, in the portico of Solomon. 24So the Jews gathered around him and said to him, “How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Messiah, tell us plainly.” 25Jesus answered, “I have told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name testify to me, 26but you do not believe because you do not belong to my sheep. 27My sheep hear my voice. I know them, and they follow me. 28I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one will snatch them out of my hand. 29My Father, in regard to what he has given me, is greater than all, and no one can snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30The Father and I are one.”
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Some thoughts on this scripture
Jesus wants to lead us to safety, to the fullness of life. He wants us to listen to his voice. He waits for our time, to enter the space of our life which is his. Time with Jesus is never wasted, whether in listening to his word and mulling over it, or just being with him in peaceful silence. Prayer is the comforting relationship of a sheep to a shepherd, our relaxing into the mystery of being loved by God.
Sheep hear the voice of the shepherd and immediately go after the shepherd. They are true followers in the image of shepherd and sheep in the words of Jesus. The voice of Jesus is heard in prayer and in the reading his word; it calls us to follow with love knowing that we are totally safe in following him.
Jesus knows that those who have eyes to see will recognize the works he does and find faith in him. In our prayer, we watch him and listen to him, knowing in faith that we see and hear the Father. And this is what we desire.
I take time to receive the assurance that Jesus gives me, to realise that I am secure in the hands of God.
As the sheep recognises the voice of its shepherd, I look over these past days, listening for the word of God spoken to me through those around me, through my observations and experiences.