He takes our hand and holds us close

This Gospel this morning shows us the tremendous trust and the tremendous claim of Jesus. Jesus’ trust was something that can be traced back to God. He was just speaking about His sheep and His flock. He said that no one would ever snatch His Own from His hands, that He is the shepherd Who will keep His sheep safe forever.

At first sight, it would seem that Jesus put His trust in His own charisma and in His own power. But, if we look a little further, we begin to see that it is the Father who gave Him the sheep. It is in His Father’s hand that holds the hands of both Jesus and our own.

Jesus’ attitude in life then was not a matter of self-confidence, but of God-confidence. Jesus was so certain of right judgment and ultimate victory over sin because He surrendered all power to God.

So what are we to make of this? If we ask God to hold our hand, we must surrender our own power to Him. And here lies the essence of the Christian life. The bond of unity with God is love: the proof of love is obedience. Christians are bound to each other as they obey the words of Christ.

Jesus obeys the Father. Christians obey Christ in the Church. And the bond we make with God creates a People that are uniquely His Own; a People He summons to worship at the foot of the holy mountain. He does not call us as individuals. He calls us a group, as a People to obey Him in the commandments, in the beatitudes and in the precepts of the Church.

Simply then, Jesus came to this world to make us what He is and the proof of His love is obedience to the Will of the Father.

“For this reason they stand before God’s Throne and worship Him…in His Temple. The one who sits on the throne will shelter them. They will not hunger or thirst anymore, nor will the sun or any heat strike them. For the Lamb who is in the center of the throne will shepherd them and lead them to springs of life-giving water, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.” Revelation 7:14b-17