This was the pastoral scene in England on a walk during a recent day of solitude at an adjoining Carmelite retreat center. If you squint real hard you might see the dreaming spires of Oxford in the distance.
There seemed to be a couple of hundred sheep on this pasture. And their reaction to the shepherd was telling. They watched him and many ran to him when they saw him on his ATV (a modern shepherding technique I suppose).
I learned from the prior of the center in which I stayed that they generally ran to him because they were looking for their dinner or sought protection.
Of course I thought how very sheep-like many of us are. We run to our shepherd in time of need.
Thus, I urge that it is incumbent upon us, if we call ourselves disciples, to cultivate a deeper relationship with God. Let’s move beyond just being sheep to being the friends he called us to. Let’s do that through the practices of the disciples that build our faith!