Jesus said: “Very truly, I tell you, anyone who does not enter the sheepfold by the gate but climbs in by another way is a thief and a bandit. The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep hear his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.”… Jesus said to them, “Very truly, I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep.…The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly. From John 10
If you visit a library or other public building in a large city, you will often encounter homeless people. They come in to get warm in winter or cool in summer, but they also enter at all times of the year and in all climates. Being indoors gives some sense of security to those who have little of it.
One of the reasons homelessness strikes us as such a difficult situation is that the person without a home has no refuge. There’s no protection from the weather, but also no psychological sense of safety. There is no place to go inside and feel secure. There is no door.
Jesus calls himself “the door” (or gate) for the sheep, the shepherd who brings them into the fold, shuts them inside, and stands guard. But then they go out again, under his watchful eye.
We all need a refuge, a place to call home. In a day when home is a fairly transient concept, we look for security, safety, stability. People often don’t stay in one place for a long time. Even when we stay put, folks we care about move away. Life in God means we have a home wherever we are, safe from the transience of this life, spiritually secure. We are loved. We are treasured. Someone knows us by name. Someone cares what happens to us.
May you find a safe refuge, a home, in God.