I am the good shepherd.
I am Jesus’ little lamb,
Ever glad at heart I am;
For my Shepherd gently guides me,
Knows my need, and well provides me,
Loves me every day the same,
Even calls me by my name.
Henriette Maria Luise von Hayn (1724-1782)
This old children’s hymn has been on my mind the entire day. All I needed to do was check the internet for the lyrics, as I had forgotten some of the words.
I used to keep sheep. Two lambs were rejected by the mother, so I raised them by hand. I called them Nelly and Miss Schiffer. It was a lot of work, but I developed a strong "mothering" instinct toward them. They accompanied me onto the pasture and followed me everywhere I went. One day I crossed a narrow bridge, when I heard a splash to the left, and another to the right. Both of them had fallen in the water, and I had to rescue them. I don’t want to be a sheep, but this is a good comparison. Sheep are really quite helpless. It is only their thick skin that serves to protect them (perhaps that is the reason why some people are so thick skinned?). In John 10 we read about the murderer, thief and liar who slinks around looking for sheep to steal. He wants to seduce them with lies so that they lose contact with the Good Shepherd. He skulks around like a lion and slithers like a snake. Did God really say…? – that is how he injects us with his deadly poison. He presents a false picture of a Hollywood world and hopes we will fall for it. Everywhere just lies and deception. It seems that those who listen to the lies are always doing so well…
The world is a dangerous place for sheep. That is why they need the Good Shepherd who takes care of everything. Good that Jesus has mercy upon us! His compassion is so wonderful! He knows us so well, He picks the juiciest grass and the best resting place by the water. He knows my name. I am worth more to Him than Nelly and Miss Schiffer ever were to me. The little lambs enjoyed cuddling and playing with me. And Jesus, my Good Shepherd, whispers words of love to me, strokes over my tired, bowed head, comforts and encourages me and fills me with renewed strength and joy. Yes, He is the Good Shepherd!,- I am glad to be a lamb in His herd.
Thank You, Jesus! You are no ideology, no empty vessel. You are the living God! You are my Good Shepherd, who takes good care of me. With You I am safe, You love me. You know my name and everything about me. You are interested in everything I do. Who else can lay claim to such a Good Shepherd?
Bible study for today: Revelations 22,6-21