Lectionary Reflection: John 10: 11-18: The Lord is my Shepherd

The Lord, he cannot shepherd you if you are not a sheep
Nor comfort you when you lie down, nor watch you when you sleep
He cannot guide you ‘till the end, nor take your soul to keep.
The Lord, he cannot shepherd you if you are not a sheep.


Abundance falls down from above, not up from down below.
This life will give, but not enough no matter what you sew.
Your pastures will turn brown and die.  The blazing sun will burn.
And peace and rest take holidays when willful waters churn.


Your soul will live in turmoil, be uncertain in the day.
The path will be bedeviled and cause stumbling on the way.
And through confusing wilderness where nameless crossroads stand
The valley drops and shadow comes to fall on every hand.


It creeps up on the willful folks who choose to stand alone
As surely as it comes to all who look to Heaven’s throne
But who will feast and comfort you, oh master of your soul?
Just time and worm who feast on you when grave’s your heaven’s goal.


You leave a trail of dust and stone, no oil for your head.
And doubt alone will follow you when others rest in bed.
You will be Captain of your soul and master of your fate?
Well, good for you, I’ll not play games suggesting it is late.


If this is really what you want, there’s nothing I can say.
Don’t be surprised, though, when in time, the Lord says “Go away.”
You see, unless you give your heart and life for him to keep
God knows he cannot shepherd you if you will not be sheep.



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