Scripture: John 21:
15When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Simon son of John, do you truly love me more than these?"
"Yes, Lord," he said, "you know that I love you."
Jesus said, "Feed my lambs."
16Again Jesus said, "Simon son of John, do you truly love me?"
He answered, "Yes, Lord, you know that I love you."
Jesus said, "Take care of my sheep."
17 The third time he said to him, "Simon son of John, do you love me?"
Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, "Do you love me?" He said, "Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you."
Jesus said, "Feed my sheep.
Observation: The highest calling of Christianity is to reach out to others in love.
Application: Peter had been through a lot, his faith had been tried and tested, he had denied Christ when the rooster crowed, he had seen Jesus crucified, laid in a tomb and then alive again resurrected by God. Now Jesus reinstates Peter back to his calling of being the rock upon which the church would be built.
Do you love me? He asked Peter three times and each time when Peter said, “Yes Lord, I love you.” Jesus replied with the commission of feeding his sheep. What does this mean? Who are Jesus’ sheep? And what do they need to eat?
It is a spiritual metaphor for all Christians, spiritually we are sheep. Not the most flattering animal I know. And as spiritual sheep, we need to be fed with spiritual food, we need to be fed with correct knowledge of the duties we owe to God, our neighbors, and ourselves. We need to be fed understanding and grace, forgiveness and mercy and love.
We are all sheep, but we are also shepherds, as Jesus said to the disciples, “As my father has sent me, I am also sending you.” We are sheep, and we are shepherds, we need to be fed the bread of life, and we need to share it with others. You can not give away that which you do not have. Get fed spiritually, and when your cup is running over, share that spiritual food with others who need it.
Today is Christmas eve. I am happy to be able to be at home with my family. Yet, my heart is still troubled by the difficulties that my family is facing with the health of my grandfather. I am being filled now by being with my wife and children, but I must soon return to help the other sheep that God has placed in my life, and I am happy to do that because I love those sheep, and as I feed them, they also feed me, even more than I do them most of the time.
As a fellow sheep, I am honored to be able to help with the feeding of others. And I hope that some of these journals have fed you in some way. If they have and if they do, I am blessed and my greatest hope is that you are filled enough so that you may feed others.
Prayer: Father God, Almighty Jehovah,
Thank you for loving me and feeding me through your Spirit with grace and love. Help me Lord to get so full of your compassion that I am overflowing to others so that they to might be fed. Thank you for every opportunity that you present me with to feed your sheep, and help me to have the strength, wisdom and courage to not miss any of those opportunities.