April 30, 2012 Acts 11:1-18; John 10:1-10
In today’s first reading … we see Peter … again the leader … telling of his vision and experience with Gentiles who now followed Christ. The story tells of the powerful workings of the Holy Spirit as the early Christian community grows … and is shaped … into the Church. It was clear to Peter that salvation was for all … and his sharing of his experience … and the power of the Holy Spirit … helped others in the Church to understand that God desired all people to be saved through Jesus Christ.
Peter indeed… was shepherding the early Church.
In the Gospel Jesus uses the image of shepherd … and gate … a loving leader that opens life to the fullest for those that follow. Jesus shows His listeners the loving … protecting nature of God. As the Shepherd and Gate for the sheep … Jesus conveys this message.
All this seems so obvious to us … but to the first century Christians … it was a struggle to part with the ways they knew and enter into this new movement … this new way of thinking and living.
Paying attention to what Jesus said and did while living on earth … gives us opportunities to grow in our understanding of who Jesus is … and to learn from Him.
Each one of us needs to embrace … to learn from … and to live these messages of love, trust and faithfulness.
May we realize that God works in ways that we don’t always understand … but that we have Jesus … the Shepherd and the Gate.
We need to follow!