Father Arthur’s Homily May 3 – Do We Recognize God’s Voice?
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and
have it abundantly. – Jesus”
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
In today’s Gospel, Jesus tells us that He is the Shepherd and that His sheep know His voice. We are His sheep. But in our contemporary world – during the pandemic, we constantly hear many voices speaking to us through the television, the internet, twitter, text-messages. Indeed, we are bombarded with the voices and ideas of politicians, celebrities, journalists, lawyers, and newscasters. We are bombarded by messages and ways of looking at the world that may or (in many instances) may not be very Christ-like.
Do we understand the meaning of Jesus’ words? The Lord speaks human voice from the time He came on earth, through the centuries, until now. He speaks to us today! He speaks through the Sacred Scripture. He speaks through the Church. He speaks through the events of this world and in the privacy of our lives. His voice should be the very center of our lives, since we are members of His Body and chosen by Him. Are we allowing Jesus, the Good Shepherd, to be the real shepherd of our lives or have other “voices” become more attractive to us? Our world and the time in which we live is filled with so many voices, so many ideas, so many contemporary Pharisees speaking their minds, seeking their own power and glory, that it is often very difficult for us to even hear the voice of the Lord. And so, my brothers and sisters, we might ask ourselves: What is the solution to this problem? What can we do to recognize God’s voice?
On this Sunday, I would like to invite each of us to consider what voices in our lives drown out the voice of the Good Shepherd? Does Christ have to compete with TV and internet news, with economic goals and pet projects, with frantic good works and our daily business? What thieves have come into our lives only to steal and slaughter and destroy our relationship with God? As Christ’s followers, do we really want to listen to Jesus’ voice and follow Him to the end? If so, let’s spend time in quiet prayer to hear God’s voice in our lives. Take time each day to turn off the television, turn off our computers and cell phones, turn off the car radio and our iPods, and create an atmosphere of silence where we can learn to be alone with the Lord and to hear the tiny whispering sound of God’s voice in our souls.
Rev. Artur Marat