Devotional: May 7, 2020
Jesus said, “My sheep recognize my voice. I know them, and they follow me. I give them real and eternal life. They are protected from the Destroyer for good. No one can steal them from out of my hand. The Father who put them under my care is so much greater than the Destroyer and Thief. No one could ever get them away from him.”
John 10: 27-29 The Message
A couple of weeks ago, I ran across a description of a shepherd’s care for a bummer lamb. It comes from a book by author Sheila Walsh, entitled, Loved Back to Life. Here it is:
Every once and a while, a ewe will give birth to a lamb and reject it. There are many reasons she may do this. If the lamb is returned to the ewe, the mother may even kick the poor animal away. Once an ewe rejects one of her lambs, she will never change her mind. These little lambs will hang their heads so low that it looks like something is wrong with its neck. Their spirit is broken.
These lambs are called “bummer lambs.” Unless the shepherd intervenes, that lamb will die, rejected and alone. So, do you know what the shepherd does? He takes that rejected little one into his home, hand-feeds it and keep it warm by the fire. He will wrap it up with blankets and hold it to his chest so the bummer can hear his heartbeat. Once the lamb is strong enough, the shepherd will place it back in the field with the rest of the flock. But that sheep never forgets how the shepherd cared for him when his mother rejected him.
When the shepherd calls for the flock, guess who runs to him first? That is right, the bummer sheep. He knows his voice intimately. It is not that the bummer lamb is loved more, it just knows intimately the one who loves it. It's not that it is loved more, it just believes it because it has experienced that love one on one.
So many of us are bummer lambs, rejected and broken. But He is the good Shepherd. He cares for our every need and holds us close to His heart so we can hear His heart beat. We may be broken but we are deeply loved by the Shepherd.
Today, know that you have a loving Shepherd. In spite of the hardships we face in the world, we are loved by our Lord. Cling to that love! Rejoice in the fact that you know the voice of the Good Shepherd!
God of sinners and saints,
We thank you for your loving voice, which reassures us when we are lost, rejected, and in need of hope. May we always tune our ears, and our hearts, to hear your voice, above all the other distracting and disturbing sounds in our pasture. We pray this prayer in the name of Your son, our loving Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ. Amen.