“My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand.”
John 10:27-28 NIV
It is so interesting to me that Jesus compares us to sheep throughout the Bible. Sheep require care. Left to their own will- they will surely perish. They need the shepherd’s guidance, care and protection.
Occasionally a mother sheep will reject a lamb. The lamb is called a “bummer.” Truly a disappointment. But a good shepherd still sees the lamb’s value. He takes the sheep into his personal care. He holds it close to him. He personally cares for it until the lamb is strong enough to join the herd.
That little lamb never forgets the shepherd’s voice. It is a devoted follower and may even earn an important role as the “bell sheep.” The bell sheep gets to wear a bell that the other sheep will follow. The bell sheep must know the Shepherd and follow him faithfully.
Jesus is still teaching me a simple truth. He has not called me to “be the best I can be.” He never said “strive” “juggle all the plates” “do it all.”
Nope. Not in the Bible – that’s not His voice.
He did say, “Love the lord your God with all your heart, mind, and strength.” (Matthew 22:37)
When I strive to be all the things I think I should be- I end up a bummer. So many times I’ve fallen to my knees heart heavy in disappointment and so weary. Overwhelmed, frustrated, hurt, lost.
My good shepherd picks me up. He comforts me. He doesn’t say “figure it out.” He says “follow me.” When I fix my eyes on Him He provides everything I need.
Father, thank you for your faithful love and great compassion. We are worse than “bummers.” We were not rejected- but rebellious. Father draw us close to your side. Teach us to love you. Let our hearts desire nothing more than you. Fix our eyes on you and teach us to confidently follow you without fear or worry. You are our good Shepherd and we can fully rely on your care. Let our lives, love, and joy be a beacon- a bell – that will lead others to you.