“Feed my sheep.”

John 21:17

Three times Jesus asked Peter, “Peter, do you love me?”  If it were today, we might suspect that Jesus was somehow memory challenged but Peter knew Jesus was referring to the three times Peter had denied knowing Jesus at the trial.  I can imagine Peter and Jesus sitting around that fire, Peter hanging his head in his hands, and in distress of soul saying, “Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.”

         I would expect Jesus to do a review at this point of Peter’s behavior with perhaps helpful hints or a parable or perhaps sharing a Psalm about the Good Shepherd rescuing his sheep when it strays, but Jesus doesn’t.  Jesus just asks a question that goes to the heart of relationship.  “Do you love me?”  Peter, in the face of his failures and mistakes, in essence, says – you know everything about me, Jesus, and I still choose you as my Lord.

         Jesus responds.  Feed my sheep.  Today let us ponder a bit what the word “feed” might mean.  I doubt Jesus was talking about the fish fry in front of them.  I somehow do not think Jesus was talking about theology, making sure others understood with their minds everything about Jesus.  I think Jesus was asking Peter to care for people’s hearts.

         So what feeds your heart?  My head or mind is fed by intellectual stuff but my heart is fed by love, by memories, by laughter, by music, by walks on the beach and more.  List five things that feed your heart and then ponder who you could bless by sharing that same love with them.  Jesus does not ask us to be perfect but to be caring.  Blessings!

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