Jesus used this figure of speech, but they did not understand what he was telling them. John 10:6 (NIV)
Jesus likens Himself to a Shepherd Who leads His flock. His sheep recognize His voice. They follow Him. He is the only One they listen to. They run from strange voices which would lead them in another direction. But people just don´t get it. They struggle to follow His meaning. They cannot picture what He is saying. So He has to try and use a different analogy. He tries to teach them using other words. Could we say that we still have this problem today? When we read or hear of Jesus´ instructions for us, do His words speak to us? To they get in under the tough surface of our skin? Do they sink right down into the quivering heart of our soul? Does the meaning of His words reach us as living and vital food that gives us the strength to rise up and go about our day? Do we find new and pertinent meaning inside the old stories and parables every time we go to them?
What do we need to do to truly understand something? Do we race quickly through all the possible outcomes and meanings until we find one which is satisfactory to our liking? Do we use our experience, our education and the influences we have upon our lives to help us decide? Are some of us smarter than others? Do we come up with a more correct deduction than the next guy? Or are we dealing with a little larger issue? Is there a Being behind all our studies and debates? Is there Someone there Who we are to find? Is it the rules and stipulations we are to understand? Or should there be a Person Who we are coming to know? When we talk of understanding, should we talk about understanding the words the Teacher uses? Or should we realize that true meaning lies in seeing where Jesus is going with His words? Should we puff ourselves up on interpreting His language? Or should we be thrilled and drawn closer to Him with the thought that He is revealing to us, His confided friends, secret mysteries that we can progressively discover throughout all eternity?
To understand Jesus, should we first realize that a complete understanding is impossible for us mortals? Should we give credit to the Son of God and admit that part of His heritage and attributes would make Him so wonderful that for all we have discovered about Him already, there is always more to come? When our hearts and our minds are opened to receive a new discovery of Christ, could we praise the Lord and lean further upon Him? Could we draw closer still in spirit knowing that He is confiding in us? Shall we let our hearts soar with the revelation that He is giving to us about the importance He can have in our lives? Shall we praise God that He desires to share with us a deep and intimate relationship? How should we define understanding Jesus today? Who is it that understands Him now?
Dear Jesus, we want to come to know You more! You speak using familiar language. But You are from above. You are with God and so much higher than we can imagine. Yet You call us to You. You would show us the Father. You are teaching us to trust You! Let us realize that every discovery we make as we come closer to You is a treasure beyond compare! Give us an eternity to enjoy our awakening understandings! Give us more to learn of God and His ways each day! God is Spirit, You told us that! Help us to learn more of what that can mean for us! Let us lean fully upon You in every moment as You guide us through the mists. Let our closeness and our trust in You open new doors to exciting revelations! Help us begin a journey into understanding the fathomless wonders of God! And thank You for the invitation to come on that journey!