"You were as sheep going astray, but now you have turned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls
Little David, so runs the story, was a shepherd boy who lived in Nazareth at the time of Christ. Of all the sheep in his flock David loved one little lamb best. He was wondering what name to give his pet. According to the custom of his day, he had named his sheep after the heroes of his race. One he called Solomon, another Moses, another Elias, and so on. But there were so many sheep that he had run out of names. There was no hero left to name his pet lamb after. He looked through the Scriptures and found a beautiful name. He called his pet lamb, Lamb of God." What he did not know was that "Lamb God" was one of the names of the Saviour.
One day his lamb, "Lamb of God," wandered away from him. With tears in his eyes David went searching for it. He asked everyone he met if they had seen his lost lamb, but no one could help him. He wandered through the village shouting, "Lamb of God, where are you?" He passed a small house where a beautiful Lady sat spinning in the doorway. She heard him shouting and said: "He is inside." David ran inside the house shouting "Lamb of God, I've found you." He stopped short. His lamb was not there but a Man with a kind face and gentle eyes looked up from a carpenter's bench and smiled. David stammered, " I am looking for my lamb that is lost." The Man said, "So am I, but I will find yours for you first." He went out and came back in a few minutes with David's lamb across His shoulders. Then the Man spoke to David and told him that He was the Messias, who had come to save the world. David listened wide eyed to the story and believed it. But he was so tired that his head began to nod and he fell asleep. The Lady, who was Mary, came in and smiled, for they made a beautiful picture. David was asleep in the Carpenter's lap. He had one arm around the neck of the Lamb of God and the other arm around the neck of the God of the lamb.
Our Lord's favorite name for Himself was "Shepherd." This morning's Gospel is all about the Good Shepherd. The Epistle for this morning was chosen from St. Paul because of the text, "You were as sheep going astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls."
Whenever you have lost anything you can always find it at the feet of Christ. He is the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls. You used to say your prayers, but now you have lost the habit of prayer. You will find that habit again if you look for it at the feet of Christ. Your soul was once brilliantly shining with grace. You have lost grace and wander in darkness. You will find light if you search for it at the feet of Christ. You have lost someone dear to you through death. You will find them at the feet of Christ. Whatever you have lost, you will find it at the feet of Christ, because He is the Shepherd and Guardian of our souls.
- Heirs of the Kingdom, Imprimatur 1949 -