The importance of vigilance and care

Thought for the Week

At lambing time, long hours are worked by sheep-farmers. By now, most lambing sheds are empty.

Spring is heralded by fields filled with ewes and their young lambs.

However, the work of shepherding and the need for vigilance and care continues throughout the year.

This Sunday is often referred to as ‘Good Shepherd Sunday’. The gospel, from John Chapter 10, includes Jesus’ saying ‘I am the good shepherd’.

The day invites reflection upon the practise and delivery of both social and pastoral care. It’s often observed that the mark of a civilised society is how it treats its most vulnerable members.

Long before Jesus, the prophet Ezekiel denounced his nation’s leaders: ‘You have not taken care of the weak ones; healed those that are sick; bandaged those who are hurt; brought back those that wandered off….’

There are occasions when those in power lack care and understanding. Decision-makers too easily lose touch with the needs of those they serve. Christ, the good shepherd, highlights the importance of vigilance and care. He demonstrates that, above all, care has a personal cost.

Rev Alan Barker

Holbeach Methodist Church