I know I'm not the only one who has been wondering this this week, but I'm going to throw it out here one more time. What in the heck does Good Shepherd Sunday, the Good Shepherd metaphor, sheep folds, and sheep mean to the so, so many of us who live in urban and suburban environments? And really what does it mean to people who even live in rural areas, but areas where farming, ranching, and caring for the animals that work for us is entirely different now than it was in biblical times? I'm not going so far as to say that these themes are irrelevant to us today, but I will say that our distance from them in time and lifestyle makes them very difficult.
I'm going to be spending much of the day today at a workshop about ministry in a changing world. Facing Good Shepherd Sunday just serves to highlight for me how much the world has changed and is changing.
How are you preparing to proclaim the resurrection in your community tomorrow? How are you being touched by the Scripture yourself? For me those aren't always the same!
I remember last year RevGal Teri, who blogs at Clever Title Here, left some great facts and remembrances about sheep in the comments for the Tuesday Lectionary Leanings post. They practically wrote my sermon, so I had to link them here.
One last helpful hint: Do NOT under any circumstances do a Google image search for "dirty sheep" on any computer that belongs to your church, is inside your church, or could be accessed by people of your church. Some of what you find has little to do with the Good Shepherd. Just sayin'!
Come on in and join the party in the comments! All are welcome!