Jesus as the Good Shepherd?
I moved to the country some years ago and now must drive 45 minutes to get to work each day. However, I do not mind the commute as I pass over lakes and by open fields and farms. On my drive, I often spot ospreys, foxes, cows, and sheep.
However, I’ve never seen a Shepherd. I don’t even know if the job of shepherding is still an occupation today. But it was definitely in Bible times. We read quite a lot about shepherds in scripture. Even Jesus refers to Himself as the good shepherd. “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep” (John 10:11 NIV).
I’ve referred to Jesus as my Saviour, my Lord, and even my friend, but I never really thought of Him as my shepherd – until recently.
I learned that shepherds actually herd their sheep by walking behind them instead of leading from the front. Although the sheep don’t see the shepherd, the shepherd sees everything and directs from behind.
I have no need to be anxious; even in those times where I wonder where God is in my situation and worry that He may not be with me because I don’t see His hand in it. I can relax knowing that He is the Good Shepherd who knows what’s going on and never leaves me.
I also learned that shepherds wait for the right time to rescue a sheep. For example, if a sheep has jumped down to a ledge to get to some grass but cannot climb back up the steep slope, they will cry and bawl for the shepherd. But the shepherd will not attempt a rescue until the sheep has utterly exhausted itself jumping and crying. Only when it is exhausted and cannot fight its rescuer will it be safe for the shepherd to reach down to save the sheep. In those times when I wonder why God hasn’t swooped in and rescued me from my misery yet, I can remember that His timing is perfect. He will help me when it is the best time for me to be saved.
I am grateful that Jesus is not only my Lord and Saviour but also my Shepherd.
Have you considered Jesus as your Good Shepherd?
BEEP – Believing that exercise is to the body what prayer is to the spirit and healthy eating is to the body what bible study is to the spirit.