The Homing Device

“Fecisti nos ad te et inquietum est cor nostrum donec requiescat in te.” (“You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you.”)

Were St. Augustine writing this thought for a modern audience, he might say, “All believers possess an infallible homing device that takes them from this world and back to God.”

Augustine’s observation is in fact a personal commentary on our Lord’s teaching: “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, who gave them to me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand” (John 10:27-29).

I believe that underestimating the range, power, and subtlety of this device is perhaps the greatest single error we commit in our own attempts to “make Christians.” We do not make God’s sheep: they are brought to us (“and the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved”; Acts 2:47), and the only way to seek them is to transmit unencumbered the Voice of the Shepherd, which they will infallibly hear.

S. M. Hutchens is a Touchstone senior editor.


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