Have you ever pictured yourself as a “sheep in the Good Shepherd’s flock” and the Lord as the shepherd over the flock that you’re a part of? That is the unstated assumption of the 23rd Psalm you know! Come on, use your imagination – picture yourself as one of the sheep of His flock… and Him as your shepherd – the “Good Shepherd” (cp. John 10:1-21) I did… Incredibly uplifting! Wonderfully peace bringing!
But on the other hand, imagine yourself out in the wilderness alone with all its dangers and predator animals – alone, without a shepherd!
I mean think about it for a while – which would you choose? (Compare the pics)
The choice is not difficult for me! I want and need the Shepherd’s leadership, care, protection and provision! And I admit, I would find great comfort as an inexperienced lamb within a flock of more mature sheep with a shepherd’s care.
Listen, if you know Jesus, you’re one of the sheep in His flock … not the only one, but one of the “sheep” in His flock that is important to Him. In fact, Luke’s gospel declares that if you, or any of the other sheep, would go astray He’d put everything else aside to seek them (or you)! (Luke 15:1-8)
The 23rd Psalm, which I read this morning during my time of “coffee with the Lord,” declares that the Lord provides for those who are a part of His flock, He leads them, satisfies their deepest hunger and thirst, He heals their wounds, walks with them through frightening valleys as dark as death, is their security and protector, and He causes abundant lifelong blessing to come their way! In fact, being a part of the Lord’s flock has as its benefit blessings that never end… in this life AND the life to come! Check it out…
“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever!” (Psalm 23 ESV)
I tell you, I think the Psalmist was on to something really important! I want the Lord to be “my Shepherd!” I want to be a part of His “flock!”