When we focus on the troubles in our world the usual targets are government, the economy, all the people who don’t like us. They are to blame for the problems in our society. Rarely do we look at ourselves. Comes a time to see who we are.
Jesus invited people to look at themselves. Since Our Lord was able to see the potential of folks around him; He challenged them to correct their faults—to take responsibility for their actions. Like a Good Shepherd, Jesus did not ignore problems, he confronted them. Countless choose to ignore the situations facing our families—our Country, our world. Wonder what’s going to happen when we all forget how to speak to each other because everybody’s texting? What will life be like when there are no marriages—just arrangements to live together—until we don’t like each other, then you go your way and I’ll go mine? Certainly the signs of the times are pointing in such a direction. Child is crying, stick an I Pad under their nose to keep them happy. A student is not doing well in school—must be the teacher’s fault—doesn’t have anything to do with the fact that the student never does homework. Children are left home alone because the parents are out socializing—that’s what TV is for. What’s wrong with this picture? Better question—Does anybody care? Shepherding is becoming extinct. People don’t grow like grass—we need a lot more than food and water—we need shepherding, especially children. Unfortunately many parents don’t know how to shepherd their children. No child comes with instructions—with a road map. Most is hit and miss; therefore some of the unhealthy cycles to which adults were subjected are repeated in the next generation.
Confusing when a child is allowed to do whatever they want, watch whatever they want, talk back to their parents. The argument—the child is learning to express himself/herself. Picture the scene: The middle of a department store—crying at the top of their voice—having a fit and the parents pretend that nothing is happening because such behavior will avoid years of therapy in the future—well, maybe for the child but not for the people that have to listen to such a racket. Difficult to discern how much freedom to allow and when to enforce disciple. Parents have the awesome vocation to educate their children in the practice of the Faith—which means that parents must first know the faith—be convinced of the Good News in order to teach their children.
An intimate relationship with Christ is indispensible. The clue is when Jesus says, “I know mine and mine know me.” Takes an investment of time—like any relationship. Daily prayer—plugging in to the source of life is essential for our spirituality. Christ already knows us—our vocation is to know Him. Takes getting our priorities in order—takes time. The same can be said for our home—an investment of time is necessary. We presume much. “He ought to know, she ought to know, by now my children ought to know.” They don’t, otherwise we wouldn’t be having the problems we have. Presume nothing—talk to each other—avoid the phone—avoid texting—avoid emails. Eat together rather than everyone in their own room. Do stuff together—fishing—remember fishing?—that’s one reason that our School is having a fishing tournament—more than a fundraiser—the event brings families together. Hunting—camping—simple activities that don’t cost much but will leave lasting memories—all part of shepherding one another. Our family is a precious gift from God. Up to us to nourish the gift. So much energy is wasted on what could have been, might have been, should have been. Yesterday has come and gone. Today and maybe tomorrow is all we have. Allow God’s healing for the hurts we have caused—time to get on with life.
Jesus calls us to be renewed. He knows us. We are His flock and in spite of our sins, He continues to love us.