Since our world is saturated with lies, we have a difficult time discerning the truth. We confuse fiction with reality. We do not know whom to believe. As a consequence, we do not trust one another.
The majority of us are automatically suspicious. If something is too good to be true, is usually isn’t. The thief is happy because he comes only to steal and slaughter and destroy. The thief is the devil—the prince of lies. Countless are acting like him, the word on the street is that the devil is retired. Mass media is doing all his work for him. Paranoia is wide spread. We are afraid of our own shadow. If we don’t have an enemy, we go out a look for one. Weapons, and who’s got the biggest one—we do. But no one else can have bigger ones than ours. We have not yet populated other planets but are already concerned about inter-planetary war. Fear is one the devil’s favorite tricks. Lies about the monsters in the closet are perpetuated on a global scale. They are a distraction so that we do not have to face ourselves. If we are more concerned with the economy, situations across the sea, and the spies from Russia than we are with the welfare of our family, something is wrong! Parents don’t know where their children are but they won’t miss the news on TV. Husbands and wives do not speak to one another but wonder why there is no peace in the world. Children experiment with drugs, premarital sex and then we are surprised that they end up in jail and cannot stay in a relationship. We are the greatest nation on earth—strong in many ways—but we cannot keep our families together. The reason is that often we are listening to the wrong voice—the voice of the thief.
The Shepherd, on the other hand, always speaks the truth. Yet, He is difficult to follow. He is the One who asks us to forgive, to repent, to swallow our pride even when we know we are right. The Shepherd knows His sheep. He knows each of us by name—our talents and our weaknesses. All that is expected is that we use our talents for the benefit of the other sheep. We are supposed to take care of each other, not pretend that we are the only ones who matter. Sheep can get angry with each other. That’s Ok, as long as they forgive. If resentment is held in the heart, there will always be division. Unfortunately so many refuse to forgive.
A family is the domestic church—a holy place where God has chosen to live. With yelling, constant arguing, jealousies—we do not give God a chance. When we say, “I can’t stop yelling. I’ve lost all patience for my spouse, I cannot control my temper.” That’s not true! We choose not to stop. God would never give us a vocation that is impossible to live. How cruel God would be if He made us to be miserable. We choose. Marriages are not arranged. When mistakes have been made, there are solutions. It’s not the end of the world. However, if God is at the center of the home, then all things are possible—regardless of how impossible a situation might seem. Remember, emotions can get the better of us and we forget about the Shepherd. He’s in charge. He’s the boss. We need to obey His directives. The thief wants to steal, slaughter and destroy but we are protected by the Shepherd who loves us more than we love ourselves. He has given and continues to give His life for us. The best way to be grateful is to listen to his voice.
The distractions will never go away—temptations will never stop. All the more reason for us to focus on the One who never lies—Jesus Christ.