Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus; 3rd June, 2016
“What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost, until he finds it and when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbours, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me for I have found the sheep which was lost.'”
A wonderful parable being told by our Lord Jesus Christ today. There are two sides of the story we are to fully grasp the lesson to be learnt however: the side of the lost sheep and the side of the shepherd.
The lost sheep: We have all felt lost sometime during our spiritual journey in life (and if you haven’t, I guess you’re one of the ninety-nine, Well done!). When we fall away from God’s faithful due to our sins, when we make ourselves believe we can get that lasting joy and happiness we seek in the world and its pleasures- those moments are the moments we identify with the lost sheep.
The shepherd: We are shepherds of some sort living in a self-absorbed world. Not everyone who had a hundred sheep who leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the one which got missing. Isn’t that crazy? “That’s way too stressful!”, we’ll tell ourselves, “What if the sheep enjoys its lost state? What if a pack of big bad wolves come for the remaining ninety-nine, wouldn’t that be a greater loss? What’s one compared to ninety-nine anyways?” And thus this is how we let our lost brethren stray away from the faith they once believed in, we watch them drift away from God because we wouldn’t want to discomfort ourselves in searching for the lost and moreover we still have ninety-nine righteous brothers and sisters in Christ.
But God speaks to we the lost sheep today through the prophet Ezekiel:
“I myself will search for my sheep, and I will seek them out… I will rescue them from all the places where they have scattered… I will seek the lost and I will bring back the strayed and I will bind up the crippled, and I will strengthen the weak…”
And Christ speaks to we the shepherds:
“Just so I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.”
It’s high time we let God in. It’s high time we stopped on the lost path we find ourselves in and pray to God that He come find and rescue us. We ought to imitate the good shepherd who goes all the way to find the lost sheep. We too could be means through which our lost brethren find their way back to God. We too can be a reflection of His love and compassion. So let’s make our hearts sacred. Let’s make it like Christ’s.