The Shepherd And Guardian Of Souls
Jesus tells us that He is the Good Shepherd. Sheep in any given sheepfold will only follow the the voice of their shepherd because they recognize his voice. They seem to be aware and attentive to the voice of their shepherd lest they be lost.
Jesus uses this analogy to remind us that He has called us by name, but we need to hear and recognize Him as our One, True Shepherd. There is so much in our world today to distract us and keep us from hearing Our Lord's voice. Satan uses these distractions to lure us away from God. He uses those who have fallen for his lies to impersonate the Good Shepherd. Scripture warns us to beware of false prophets. None of them can promise the abundant life that Jesus promises.
The meditation for today in Magnificat is a writing by Fr. Francisco De Osuna, O.F.M. In his meditation, he uses the analogy of snow falling on the footprints of Christ, covering them so that it becomes difficult to see and follow in them. He goes on to say that, because of this "snow", we need help following Christ; more instruction is needed to travel this road that leads us to heaven. While Fr. Francisco wrote these words centuries ago, they are true for us today, perhaps even more so. In our times not only is the path of Christ snow covered, but that snow has become soiled with the filth that pervades our culture.
We may be called to live in the world but Our Lord tells us not to be of it. He clears the path so that we can see His footprints and follow in them. And just as it did for Him, that road will lead to the cross, but our faithfulness will lead us to the eternal life He has promised.
Jesus, our Good Shepherd, is the Lover and Guardian of our souls. Let us heed His voice and follow Him always.