Feed My Sheep
Today my next-door neighbor reported on his mission during sacrament meeting. I love hearing mission stories and witnessing the sweet spirit that accompanies both full-time and newly returned missionaries. It always takes me back to the year 2000 when I entered the MTC to prepare for my mission in Canada. I admit, when I was on my mission, I wondered why the members weren’t doing more to share the gospel, and I wondered why I didn’t try harder to share the gospel before my mission. I vowed to be an excellent member missionary when I returned home, but I quickly realized that it isn’t always as easy as it was when I was a full-time missionary. In fact, most of the time it seems hard. I won’t go into the reasons, because I think we all could come up with a list of at least a dozen things that make sharing the gospel hard. But when we think about all simple things that can make a big difference in someone’s day, it’s a little easier to remember that whether or not we are full-time missionaries, we are all representatives of Jesus Christ and His gospel.
I’ve always liked this conversation between Jesus and Peter:
Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs.
He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep.
He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.
Members of the Church or not, we are all the sheep of whom Jesus spoke. We have a responsibility to care for and nourish each other. It doesn’t matter if we have been members of the Church all our lives or have never even heard of Jesus Christ. Each of us need spiritual nourishment. We help Jesus feed His sheep when we share the gospel, but we also feed His sheep when we share a scripture with a friend who is struggling, pray for each other, teach each other, serve each other, and the list goes on and on and on.
This week I challenge you and your family to help Jesus feed His sheep. Each day, look for an opportunity to be a good example, help someone in need, stand up for what you know is right, invite a nonmember or inactive friend to a church activity, and anything else that will strengthen someone spiritually. Print out the picture of the sheep above and put it on your refrigerator or tape it to the wall. Each time someone in the family does something to feed His sheep, glue a cotton ball on the sheep. Throughout the week watch the sheep’s coat grow bigger and bigger from all of your good deeds. You’ll be amazed at how quickly the sheep’s coat grows from small, simple acts in our everyday lives.