Jesus said, "Feed my sheep."
After Jesus died on the cross and came back to life, he appeared to his disciples many times before he returned to heaven. One such time, he appeared to Peter and other disciples on the shores of the Sea of Galillee. As he speaks to Peter, Jesus asks three times.."Do you love me." Each time Peter answer is yes. Jesus responds, "Feed my sheep."
"Feed my sheep." What a simple request Jesus made of Peter.
But what does "Feed my sheep." truly mean?
In the time of Jesus sheperds cared for their sheep day and night. The animals grazed and slept on the hills and so did the sheperds. The sheperds showed great devotion to the care and well being of the flock, doing all they could to feed them and attend to all their needs at all times. Jesus often used the analogy of sheep and sheperds during his ministry.
Jesus is our sheperd, caring for us day and night. But when he told Peter, "Feed my sheep.", it was his way of passing on the sheperd's responsibilities to Peter. Take care of God's people Peter, all their needs, day and night.
As a Christian we need to listen to Jesus' command to Peter as a command to us. Jesus wants US to feed his sheep too, day and night. God doesn't only want us to watch over those people in our church or our family but people we see in need everywhere.
Not sure where to start "feeding his sheep"? Even though God's people are spread across the world, we don't have to travel the ocean to feed his sheep. Look around where you live. Who needs help close by? Maybe you can start by donating food to the local food pantry or better yet, volunteering there. Maybe volunteer or give supplies to your local animal shelter.
Dear God, Thank your the most simple of your commandments; to care for and love your children, your sheep. Help us Lord to reach out and help those in need, close or far. Amen.