Dear St Matthew’s Family

This Sunday is the 4th Sunday after Easter. Every year this is known as Good Shepherd Sunday, and every year we hear Psalm 23 and some portion of John 10 on this day. We remember and celebrate Jesus as the Good Shepherd, the one with the recognizable voice, and the one who points us to an abundant life.

“I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” – John 10:10b

Not just life, but abundant life; and, if we turn to Psalm 23, we hear further promises of life in the here and now, not just in eternal life. The psalmist speaks of trust in God, trust in a God who restores our souls and guides us along right pathways. The psalmist speaks of a God who provides an overflowing cup and goodness and mercy that will follow us through all the days of our lives. It’s a psalm to hold on to when there is not much else to hold on to. It’s a psalm for those times when everything around us feels like it is falling apart. That’s probably one of the reasons people think of it as a funeral psalm, which it can be, but it’s so much more. It’s a psalm of promise, God will do something!

This Sunday, in John 10, Jesus is going to call himself the gate. You could translate the word gate as door also but as the story is talking about sheep and shepherds gate works much better. But Jesus as a gate or as a door, what comes to mind for you? Welcome, invitation, division, security? Doors and gates do all those things and more. But this week, in this reading, amidst the promise of abundant life, what is Jesus as the door inviting you into? What is Jesus keeping you protected from? How is the door helping to provide rest and healing? How is the door inviting you to step out into the world on the other side of where you are? How might all of this be God’s work of bringing abundance all around us?

Saturday, April 29, at 10am we will read the entire Gospel of John and hear for ourselves the full story of the Good Shepherd and all that leads us to get there. Come join us for the full story and perspective that reading the gospel account from beginning to end provides. SignUp Genius under the Get Involved tab on our website will give you more information and a way to sign up to read.

I know spring schedules get really crowded, but know that you are always welcome through the doors of St Matthew’s. Hope to see you soon!

Grace and Peace,

Pastor Kirsten