Lectio Divina Reflections (13)
Hey Calvary, my name is Matt Walker and I’m the Associate Pastor of Community Care here at Calvary. My wife, Erin, and I have been attending Calvary since 2008. We have two little ginger kids, Henry (5) and Jack (2) and normally you’d see those two little rascals tearing up the aisles on a Sunday morning at Calvary, shaking everyone’s hand and sharing all their snacks. We all miss those times together! When I’m not working, I enjoy running, hanging out with friends, and going for family bike rides. Here are some of my thoughts as I contemplate John 10:1-21.
This passage is about how Jesus calls and knows his people (aka sheep). Jesus explains that there are people who disguise themselves as someone who will take care of you but they won’t. He says they will steal from you, so be on the look out for these types of individuals. Jesus shares that if you want to be cared for, protected and led in a way that gives you life and purpose, then come to him because he’s the gate. Jesus also tells his audience that he’s the Good Shepherd he puts this people before himself, that he knows them on an individual basis and that he gave up his life for these people. Jesus also mentions that his sheep know his voice like a shepherd and will follow him because he does take care of them.
As I reflect on this passage it speaks to me about a safe place for me, it gives me peace, and it reorients my focus to Jesus. Over the past months, it has been difficult to see and hear how Calvary has been hurting and I have been wrestling through confusion, pain, grief, loss of team and direction. I have been reading a great book from J.K. Ramsey that has helped me with putting words to all the different feelings and thoughts I have. A phase from J.K Ramsey that speaks to where I’m at is “Pain threatens our personhood.” Life felt pretty good, and then with all of the upheaval at Calvary it has threatened many different parts of me. The sentence that catches my attention right off the start of the passage is “….so he tried again. I’ll be explicit…” It grabs my attention because Jesus wants me to know that He doesn’t want me or anyone to be drowning, trying to figure out life on their own. He wants to be crystal clear or he wants to “break it down” because He wants to me to enter in the fullness of what he has for me. He wants to be with me, and he’ll keep trying again and again. This is big news because he could have not tried again and just moved on but he didn’t. He wants me to know that he sees me, he sees what I’m experiencing, he sees what I’m feeling and he wants to meet me in it. This reminds me of another J.K Ramsey quote which says, “Pain is the place where God comes to find us.” This verse speaks to that quote, and in my pain the Good Shepherd is present. Knowing that he meets me here, and that he comes to find me redirects my sight to Him and off of only my pain.
Jesus, thank-you for stopping to make sure I understand that you are the Good Shepard and that you want to protect me, love me unconditionally and that you know all parts of me extremely well. Allow me to see you and hear more and more each day. Come fill me up and lead me, your sheep, Matt
I have shared that these past months have been very hard, and it feels like I get pulled in so many directions sometimes. This time has allowed me to refocus on the one who gives me the strength, peace, love and a safe place to be. I believe Jesus is calling me to investigate slowly, to go deeper and just be with Him as I go into the place where pain threatens my personhood.
Did you try out Lectio Divina this week with John 10:1-21? Share your reflections here! If you still would like to follow with our community and contemplate weekly passages of scripture with us, check out the guide to Lectio Divina and this week’s podcast or subscribe to weekly podcast releases on Apple music.
4 Comments on ‘Lectio Divina Reflections (13)’
Thanks Matt. Such good reflection. Thank you for sharing yourself this way. It helps us all.
Thanks for your encouragement Gary!
I appreciate how you integrate John 10 with your reading of Ramsey. You give voice to our shared experience of pain at the moment. Thanks
Thanks Rusty. 😀