I’m a failure as a shepherd

I’m a failure as a shepherd.  But Jesus is not.  Sheep are selfish and stubborn.  Is it possible for me as a shepherd, to tell the sheep all the dangers they face because of their choices?  Not really. Yesterday I moved the pet lambs into their new fresh grass.  It is in my nature as a shepherd, to protect, feed, and see to all my sheep’s needs.  But they don’t believe me. They don’t trust my boundaries as being good. They go after whatever seems better in their eyes.  I use electric fences as a boundary, and my sheep have died because they blazed past the warning shock to reach the grass on the other side. Their belief is that it will be better there.  Their choices affect the whole herd, because when one sheep endures the shock of the electric fence and goes through, the others tend to follow them out.

A perfect Shepherd like Jesus who knows our deepest desires, he catches us as many times as we need and puts us into a safe place in His presence. Do we stay there? Or do we keep walking outside His safe boundaries just to fulfill desires without Him?  

By the way, I’m a failure as a shepherd because I’m a willful human being who has ignored them more than once by thinking that nothing will harm them, giving up on them, or using anger to get them in line. Jesus does none of those descriptions. He endured the perfect sacrifice to pay the fine to get them back. And yes, I’ve paid an actual fine to get my sheep back from the police, the law.

By nature, sheep will always go beyond the boundaries, even my hand-fed pet lambs. We have run away, hid from our perfect Shepherd.  He knows our failures, our waywardness, our tendency to know the right thing and not do it.  And in his perfection, he chases us, catches us, and tells us of the perfect kingdom, with perfect bodies in alignment with perfect mind that is promised to us in his kingdom or pasture he wants us to live in. When we acknowledge our failures as human beings and we exchange that mess for His perfection living inside us, which came via His death on a cross and His resurrection, this becomes the safe pasture in our present world, messy as it is. It is heaven on earth.

Thema here: This inspiration came out of a teaching from Tim Mackie on “How happy he is whose wrong-doing is forgiven, and whose sin is covered! 2 How happy is the man whose sin the Lord does not hold against him, and in whose spirit there is nothing false.” Psalm 32

Author: Thema

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