The Feast of the Good Shepherd

good-shepherdThe brush strokes on the fragile egg mesmerized me. She loved it – the lamb and the delicate purple blossoms that framed it – the perfect addition to our Easter display. She was taken with the lamb; the shepherd, on whose shoulders it was sprawled, draws me in.

He could have chosen anyone to be among the first to see him, and he chose shepherds in the field. Strong and stoic, gentle and quiet, keeping watch over the flock. There are no fences and still his sheep do not scatter. They know they are protected from enemies lurking in the shadows. When one strays it is not forsaken. The shepherd searches until it is found, carrying it home across his shoulders.

He is my shepherd and I, his lamb. He walks ahead of them and the sheep follow him, because they recognize his voice (John 10:4). He leads me; In green pastures you let me graze; to safe waters you lead me; you restore my strength. You guide me along the right path for the sake of your name (Psalm 23:2-3). He is my shepherd and has never forsaken me.

When I falter, he seeks me out and carries me. He tends to my broken heart and restores my soul. God, my Lord, is my strength; he makes my feet swift as those of hinds and enables me to go upon the heights (Hebrews 3:19). I am his lamb, and he carries me across the same shoulders that carried the cross. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I lack (Psalm 23:1).

Jennifer Hubbard resides in Newton, CT. The younger of her two children, Catherine Violet, was a victim of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.

(Magnificat, April 2015, 309)