Having Jesus invite everyone through the gate that he establishes which leads to an abundant life is a hopeful reading for this third day of a new calendar year: hopeful and welcoming. Jesus puts no boundaries on this invitation to join his fold except to follow his voice and lead as good shepherd.
Those in this world who try to limit access to this abundant life by setting criteria for entrance based on human-made regulations are proven wrong and shown to be hypocritical by today's reading from John. All are welcome into Jesus' pasture and will find an abundance on which to live. Does an abundant life mean there will be no disagreements? No, I don't believe Jesus is leading us to some homogenous pasture. Abundance means vibrancy and energy and diversity and life-fulfilling potential that can surround and embody and enrich all of our days. What a vision that is for us to incorporate into our day today.
Copyright 2011, The Rev. John F. Dwyer. All Rights Reserved.