Tag Archives: shepherd

October 11

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
Psalms 23:1 NKJV

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for this verse. There is such peace and security in it. You truly are the Good Shepherd and You have cared for and provided for me in so many ways. I am so grateful and humbled by Your never-ending love. Lord Jesus, You alone are my strength and security. In You I find all that I need: peace, love, joy, patience, goodness, kindness, understanding, and eternal life. Lord, there are many things I do not understand, but I praise You that You are using all things for Your glory. Lord Jesus, for those who are suffering, please bring them comfort. Lord, for those who are afraid or in bondage, please bring healing and freedom. Lord, for those who are piercing themselves through with many sorrows, trying to fulfill their own salvation, please bring them to the truth. Soften the hearts and return those who know of You to a right relationship with You. Lord, for those who have yet to know You, please open their eyes that they might see, open their ears that they might hear, let the truth be planted in fruitful ground. Please, Lord, put godly men and women into places of authority. Let those who are in positions of leadership be honorable before You. Please do not allow anyone to use their authority to harm others. May our lives and the lives of those who are called by Your name, be honorable before You. Please be glorified in us. Lord Jesus, thank You for being my all. Thank You for blessing me in so many ways. Lord, thank You for shining Your truth into my life. Please continue to hone my heart into Your image. I love You, Jesus. Thank You. Amen.

Shepherd

All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
Isaiah 53:6

Anyone who has raised sheep can tell you they “stray” a good deal.

Many a time, as a youth, my frustration over the wandering of the flock would cost me hours of fence repair and regrouping the animals.

When a sheep is wandering outside the protection of the fence, they rarely understand their danger.

Instead it is when the shepherd or caretaker shows up that they seem to suddenly panic over their wandering and will bolt for places unknown.

They can literally run themselves to death or fall and cast themselves which also leads to death, if left in that position.

But did this state of alarm hit them as they wandered through the hole in their protection?

No.

It came when they were face to face with the one who put the protection in place.

The one who actually cares for them and understands all the dangers they do not.

Does this wayward sheep call to the shepherd, or follow them back to their safety?

No.

They bolt.

As fast as their short skinny legs will carry them.

They will blindly flee straight into a dead end and then once at the end will dash madly back and forth, back and forth, all because they left the safety of the fence.

The protection set around a grassy area, supplied with fresh water, and normally cover, all set up for their care.

Do you see yourself in the wayward sheep?

I certainly can see myself.

I can tell you that a good shepherd never ignores the wayward sheep.

Instead they follow and do whatever is necessary to return the sheep to the safety of the fence.

Jesus is our Good Shepherd.

And He laid down His life for the sheep!

All this knowledge helps me to better understand how I need to handle my walk with the Lord Jesus.

Not to be unaware of the protection He placed in my life through His Holy Word.

To learn not to panic when confronted with an area of my life where I have strayed, but to instead humbly confess and seek the security of the protection and the way back to it by following the Good Shepherd.

To realize I will never completely understand all that goes on, but I can always trust the Good Shepherd.

He really has my best at heart.

As a person who has raised these animals I can tell you, there is only one kind of sheep which does not follow the average behavior.

It’s the one which has been hand-raised.

Whether by illness or some sort of loss, the lamb was raised, not by another sheep, but by the Shepherd alone.

Those are the only ones who will come when they are called.

Will seek the Shepherd when lost.

The ones who will bleat pleadingly when the Shepherd comes into sight.

That’s the kind of sheep I want to be.

4 days till Christmas

Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
Psalms 23:4 NKJV

The staff, a simple tool of the shepherd, is a comfort.

Shepherds are no longer common in our culture.

Yet, they still exist, and although each culture handles things uniquely, even now a staff is a useful tool.

Anyone who has raised sheep can explain how each one needs to be guided and often they tend to go their own way.

The staff is an extension of the shepherd and is used to direct, guide, and at times keep the sheep from heading the wrong way.

Scripture tells of a Good Shepherd, one who cares for the sheep.

Psalm 80:1 NKJV — To the Chief Musician. Set to “The Lilies.” A Testimony of Asaph. A Psalm. Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, You who lead Joseph like a flock; You who dwell between the cherubim, shine forth! (Emphasis added)

Isaiah 40:11 NKJV — He will feed His flock like a shepherd; He will gather the lambs with His arm, And carry them in His bosom, And gently lead those who are with young. (Emphasis added)

Micah 7:14 NKJV — Shepherd Your people with Your staff, The flock of Your heritage, Who dwell solitarily in a woodland, In the midst of Carmel; Let them feed in Bashan and Gilead, As in days of old. (Emphasis added)

Jesus said:

John 10:11 NKJV — “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.”

Not only did He sacrifice Himself for each and every one of us, He leads us down the paths of righteousness.

Today’s addition to the Nativity is a shepherd.

Another beautiful picture of Jesus, the Good Shepherd, who laid down His life for each one of us.

The shepherd’s staff is a comfort to those who follow Jesus.

We have God’s Holy Word to guide and direct us.

We have Jesus to lead us.

We are not left alone, scattered and in danger of predictors.

John 10:10 NKJV — “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.”

As we look on our Nativity and remember our Good Shepherd, let us rejoice!

Our lives belong to Jesus.

When we submit our lives to Him, He becomes King.

With His Kingship, He guides and directs us, He comforts and provides for us.

“Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.” Hebrews 13:20-21 NKJV

…what that means.

“The LORD is my shepherd,

I shall not want.” Psalm 23:1 NKJV

Do I really understand what that means?

First of all.

Not completely.

But I’m learning.

I am familiar with sheep and the tasks of a shepherd.

From the time I was 13 my family owned sheep and I’ve done many tasks which are required for their care.

But do I know what that means?

The LORD is my shepherd.

He’s teaching me that meaning every day.

Right now it’s another level.

As I live away from my home where there isn’t anything causing me breathing issues.

I’m assailed by doubts and fears as to how this will play out in my day-to-day.

Yet, when I look to this chapter I know what Jesus is saying.

I begin to understand again that means learning a new way of living because He’s caring for my everything.

Including this.

I remember what I already know.

Jesus is the Good Shepherd and he will never leave me nor forsake me.

I am beginning to see another side of His depth.

No matter how difficult it is for me to be away from my family I’m never away from Jesus.

No matter how I long for the future and being restored to health, family, and home, Jesus is restoring my soul each and every day whether I feel it or not.

No matter what my perspective of the needs I have, Jesus understands my true needs and is my daily provision.

And He’s here speaking with me.

Listening to me.

Encouraging and comforting my every single step.

There is nothing He won’t do to see that my soul is continually guided towards Himself.

I can smile as I walk towards Jesus and continue on the path of life.

“The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want.”

For He truly is the One Who knows what that means.

Shepherd

2013-11-21 16.16.43“The LORD is my shepherd;

I shall not want.”

Ps. 23:1

As a girl of thirteen I began raising sheep

with my folks and sister.

I learned so much about what a good shepherd means.

First, I learned, you never have a day off,

unless you pay someone else to watch the sheep.

Second, there are so many things you have to be mindful of:

Briars and blackberries which stick in wool and can tangle and trap them.

Crevices and low places such as a slope that can cause them to lose their footing and get upside down.

How to care for their feet, remove their wool, give vaccinations and medicine…

The list goes on.

So much God has taught through this effort of caring for sheep.

Briars and blackberries would not be such a problem if the sheep would stay away from them, but they don’t.

Instead they push their wooly bodies as far into a patch as possible not realizing they are caught

Until they try to go the other way

With each movement they are torn by the very thing they forced themselves into.

Crevices and low places are so very dangerous for a sheep because they can roll into these and end up laying flat on their back.

Once a sheep is on their back they give up and although nothing is physically wrong with them, they will die if they are not turned over quickly.

A sheep allowed to lie on its back for too long can die even once it has been righted.

Why?

Normally because they refuse to stand up and move.

It’s almost like they think they are no longer able.

Physical needs of caring for their bodies taught a relentless careful eye is needed.

And I have often reflected that if I can keep watch over an animal how much more is the Father keeping watch over me?

I can truly thank the Lord, for He is my shepherd, and

I can trust completely

in Him.