The apostles gathered around Jesus, and told him all that they had done and taught. He said to them, “Come away to a deserted place all by yourselves and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat. And they went away in the boat to a deserted place by themselves.
Now many saw them going and recognized them, and they hurried there on foot from all the towns and arrived ahead of them. As he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach them many things.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
According to St. Ignatius, we don’t listen to Scripture in order to break open its meaning. We listen to scripture to break open our meaning. God meets us where we are, individually, in the moment. A moment in Scripture can lead us. It can fill our hearts with more love and fill our lives with more light.
Today, the moments for me echo John 10 and Psalm 23. Like the Good Shepherd, Jesus hears the needs of his apostles for food and rest and then leads them out. “Come away to a deserted place,” he says, “all by yourselves and rest awhile.” His voice is tender and his message is intimate. And they follow it, going away in a boat to be by themselves.
In the next moment, Jesus sees a hurried crowd. They have recognized him and, like lost sheep, have followed him. His heart fills with compassion and he brings them close. They need him and know him. He finds them and feeds them. They are his and he is theirs. One flock. One Shepherd.
How does the voice of Jesus console me today?
What needs do I bring to the shores of God’s love?
—Carla Orlando coordinates Spiritual Direction Services for the Ignatian Spirituality Center in Seattle.
God, the Good Shepherd,
I want to know you like the children do.
They say You “take the sheep out to see the bright stars at night;”
That You ”bring them to a good hill and let them roll down it;”
And that when they’re lost, you will find them and “give them a big smile.”
I’ve seen you, I’ve heard you, I know you, but I know there is more of you to know.
I need and want to know more.
—Rebekah Rojcewicz, paraphrased by Carla OrlandoPlease share the Good Word with your friends!