John 10:22-30 (NIV)

22 Then came the Feast of Dedicationa at Jerusalem. It was winter, 23 and Jesus was in the temple area walking in Solomon’s Colonnade.1 24 The Jews2 gathered around him, saying, “How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Christ,b tell us plainly.”25 Jesus answered, “I did tell you,4 but you do not believe. The miracles I do in my Father’s name speak for me,5 26 but you do not believe because you are not my sheep.6 27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them,7 and they follow me.8 28 I give them eternal life,9 and they shall never perish;10 no one can snatch them out of my hand.11 29 My Father, who has given them to me,12 is greater than allc;13 no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”14

Mark 9:7 (NIV)

7 Then a cloud appeared and enveloped them, and a voice came from the cloud:1 “This is my Son, whom I love. Listen to him!”2                            

DEVOTION -Michelle S. Lazurek (Pennsylvania)

My husband and I took a trip to the mall one day with our eight-month-old son.  While my husband entertained our son, I enjoyed some “me time,” window shopping alone.  But after a while I heard a happy squeal piercing through the crowd.  Immediately able to identify the screamer, I whipped my head around and spotted my husband and son a great distance away.  Our son was waving happily and blowing me kisses.  Even among the thousands of other sounds filling the crowded mall that day, I distinguished the sound of my son’s voice.

This experience reminds me of my relationship with Christ.  Through an intimate relationship with Christ, I am learning to distinguish his voice, even amidst the clamor of the world.  John 10:27-28 says, “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.  I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand” (John 10:27-28).  My son is a part of me, and I am a part of him.  Sheep know their shepherd’s voice because of the time and care a shepherd invests in them.  Our Shepherd is a part of him.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: Today  I will listen for my Shepherd’s voice over the clamor of this world.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, help us decipher your voice over the sounds of the world.  Amen.