Make me a shepherd


One of the holiday cards I received this year contained a laminated bookmark “Make Me A Shepherd” by Domie Guzman, SSP.  It sets out the guidelines to become a better person this year and after in the form of the acronym S.H.E.P.H.E.R.D.  The eight guidelines follow.

S – a SERVANT’S HEART that is committed to leadership that seeks to serve, rather than to be served.

H – a HUMBLE HEART that is meek and humble like a lamb, to heal the broken-hearted.

E – a EUCHARISTIC HEART that is offered, consecrated and dedicated for the good of all.

P – a PRAYING HEART that unceasingly intercedes for all, but especially for the lost, the last and the least.

H – a HEARING HEART that has a space for God’s Words, and His people’s woes.

E – an EVANGELISTIC HEART that is always on fire with Faith, Hope and Love, lived and shared for the other’s sake.

R – a RENEWED HEART that is continuously discerning the inspirations and movements of the Holy Spirit in you.

D – a DISCIPLE’S HEART that seeks to follow God’s Will, even to death on the Cross.

Just think … What if more people became true shepherds in their lives, leading by good example and truly caring for their flock?  What if you and I live our lives as shepherds instead of as sheep who just play follow the leader in all we do?

St. Paul in his letter to the Galatians tells us what happens when we live God’s way.  He writes that God would bring gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard – things like affection for others, exuberance about living a joyful life, and that peace and serenity would be ours.

Usually the New Year Resolutions and Goals that we make (and promise ourselves to do) are based on the externals around us.  After reflecting on these SHEPHERD guidelines, I see that these deal with the “internals” of our life.  Our heart is the focus!

The externals around us will shift, will change, will come and go during the year and many times are beyond our control … and our resolutions also follow the same pattern – shifting, changing, coming and going.

However, the internals of our life since they are anchored in our heart and on God are less subject to change and can be depended on to be concrete guidelines for us to live out during the year.

So instead of just making New Year’s Resolutions, let’s make Shepherd-Heart  Resolutions to guide us in our activities this 2019.