Pause and slowly pray this prayer as you enter into the presence of God and read his word.
Jesus, today, I want to see you more clearly, love you more dearly, and follow you more nearly. Show yourself to me. Help me. Amen.
Slowly read through the passage below, pausing to see Jesus and interact with him in prayer through the Scripture. Then answer the following questions as an invitation to walk more nearly with Jesus today.
How do you see Jesus in this passage?
What do you love about Jesus today?
What is one thing you can do today to follow Jesus more nearly?
7 Therefore Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. 8 All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. 9 I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So, when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. 13 The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.
14 “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. 17 The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”
19 The Jews who heard these words were again divided. 20 Many of them said, “He is demon-possessed and raving mad. Why listen to him?” 21 But others said, “These are not the sayings of a man possessed by a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?”
Jesus, you are indeed my good shepherd. You laid down your life for me. You care for me. You never abandon me. You know me and I know you. Thank you for making yourself knowable. I want to listen to your voice. I want your voice to be louder than all the other voices in my head and in my life. I long to follow you and be cared for by you, my good shepherd. I love you. Amen.
We believe life with God is best done together. Use this Scripture and questions with others:
• With a friend, you can call or video chat.
• With your Life Group (even as you meet virtually).
• Around the table with roommates, spouses and kids.
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