Daily Reflection
February 22nd, 1999
Daniel Patrick O’Reilly
Registrar's Office
1 Peter 5:1-4
Psalms 23:1-6
Matthew 16:13-19

Remember who you are!  This phrase can be a stinging rebuke to someone stepping outside society’s established socio-economic boundaries.  However, for us, as believers, what a joyful reminder.  I am a beloved and cherished child of God.  God is my shepherd and he always watches over me.  Today’s scripture readings really reinforce this thought.

In Psalm 23, one of the most soothing and reassuring verses in all of scripture, we are assured that the Lord is our shepherd and that He will be with us through all of our life.  Forever.

In Matthew, Peter is the first to confess Jesus as Christ and Jesus says “on this rock I will build my church.”  Man, anytime I’m feeling unworthy as a child of God or shepherd of God’s flock, I need to read this scripture.  God takes an impulsive, hot headed fisherman from the boondocks who, when push comes to shove, won’t even admit to knowing Christ and says, “you’re the one.”  Wait a minute.  Didn’t you mean to pick someone a little more responsible, a little steadier?  Wouldn’t an architect be better suited for building a church?  Maybe someone with an education, some political connections, some social graces or maybe some money for all those leaflets we’ll need to be printing?  Good thing I wasn’t picking, eh?  Praise God for looking at the heart.

In 1 Peter, Peter tells how important it is that we be shepherds of God’s flock.  Not because we have to or for money, but because we are willing and eager to serve and we want to be examples.  I teach fourth grade Sunday school.  This is something akin to herding cats.  At the end of the hour, I think that it truly is a miracle if anything has sunk in to these young minds.  In a recent lesson, I emphasized that anyone can be a follower of Christ.  We played a game where there were distinct winners and losers and then went around the room talking about times where we were made to feel like losers.  It is heart rending to hear nine year olds speak of rejection by peers or even adults.  It is glorious to assure them that Christ will never do that to them.  Society loves to pigeon hole each of us as either a winner or a loser.  Money, power, physical appearance, sports prowess are just a few of society’s criteria when labeling us or telling us what we can and cannot do.  However, Christ espouses no such criteria.  He loves us as we are and simply says follow my lead in the dance of life.
Remember whose you are! 

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