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Do you know The Good Shepherd?

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By Bea Wallen

   The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want (Psalm 23:1).

In my younger years I questioned this verse of scripture, “I shall not want.” I wondered, why am I not to want the Lord as my shepherd? As I became more mature and gained more understanding of the scriptures I realized that God would not allow my need to go unmet.

With Jesus as my shepherd, I shall not want for anything. He will care for me and protect me. I have learned to trust the Good Shepherd to lead me in the right paths and never to desert me.

Trust is a critical element of faith.  Picture a small child standing on the edge of a pool. His father waist deep in the water, stretches out his hands saying, “jump I’ll catch you.“ The child might believe his father can catch him, but without trust he will never jump.

The Bible teaches that we trust God by believing his word is true by obeying his will and by depending on Christ alone for salvation. We can trust God completely because he is completely trustworthy.

John 10:14 states, “I am the good shepherd and I know my sheep and an known by my own.  Writing the Lord is my shepherd was David’s way of saying “the Lord provides for me and protects me from harm.” David was referring to the God who was, the God who is  and the God who will always be. Life doesn’t claim to mean total prosperity and problem free living. But when sickness comes God can be our healer if we trust him. When worry comes, he can be our peacemaker, when Satan attacks us with false accusations God is our spiritual warrior. John 10:10 states, “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.”

Whom to believe the Good Shepherd or the lies of Satan is the challenge you and I face each day. John 10:3-5 states, “The sheep hear his voice and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. And when be brings out his own sheep he goes before them and the sheep follow him for they know his voice. Yet they will by no means follow a stranger but will flee from him for they do knot know the voice of strangers.”

In verse 12 Jesus says he doesn’t desert the sheep when they are threatened by the wolf as a hired man would. He is our protector. “The good shepherd gives his life for the sheep,” (John 10:11). We can choose to have a more abundant life by trusting the Lord as our leader and obey him and by producing the fruits of the spirit. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering’s, kindness, goodness, faithfulness” (Galatians 5:22).

As humans we sometimes fail and come short of God’s standards. We stray away from the flock. When we stray God pulls us back in to the flock giving us another chance at a relationship with him. (Psalm 23:3). “If we confess out sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all righteousness. (1 John 1:9).

We cannot demand the world to acknowledge our trust, faithfulness and service to God. But God knows out heart, mind and  deeds. He will be the one to reward those who trust in his word and follow him.            

We need to ask ourselves, “Do I know the Good Shepherd and am I known by him” (see John 10:14-15). We can have the confidence that David had, knowing that we will spend eternity in heaven living in the green pastures with the Good Shepherd taking care of our every need.

From My Heart