The Good Shepherd

Hello everyone!  It is a beautiful day, even though it is rather breezy with a hint of damp in the air.  I hope to be able to get some more gardening done after lunch, as long as it does not change to rain.  This morning I led the service on the theme of the Good Shepherd at Bar chapel.  The church looked beautiful full of wonderful displays of flowers ready for a wedding of the daughter of a member of the church this afternoon.  I hope the sun shines for them and that they are half as happy as my beloved and I are.  I had a picture of Jesus as the Good Shepherd, which I used for my children’s talk, even though there were no children there!!  I had some tracing paper which I used to draw round the picture of Jesus and the sheep to show how I had to have it fixed to the clipboard to keep it close to the picture, so I could draw it properly.  We have been called to follow Christ and follow in his footsteps, our lives following the pattern of his, just as I had tried to trace the Good Shepherd picture.  We often make mistakes but Jesus is there to help us and bring us safely back onto the safe path with him.  Whenever we feel lonely or afraid, or weak and are tempted to do wrong things I suggested that they remember the picture of the Good Shepherd and remember that he is with us always.  I used the Good Shepherd prayer, which Lauren had written for after my service last year on the same theme, to conclude the children’s talk.  The readings from Acts and 1John3 reflected the main theme of the Good Shepherd as in Acts Peter faced the same authorities, who had had Jesus condemned to death, but he was unafraid to tell them that he had healed the lame man through the name of Jesus; the very same Jesus they had had killed had been raised to life by God and continued his ministry of healing by the power of the Holy Spirit.  John in his letter urged his readers to show their commitment to Christ in their actions of love to the people in need, being prepared to lay down their lives for their brothers and sisters.  I urged them to continue to follow the example of Jesus and care as he did for our fellow believers and those in need.  We sang some great hymns of praise including ‘Praise my soul the King of Heaven’, ‘I know that my Redeemer lives’, ‘The King of love my shepherd is,’ and ‘In heavenly love abiding.’  This is the day that the Lord has made and I rejoice and am glad in it.

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