Thursday, April 23, 2015

One Among the Sheep

JOHN 10:11-18
“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand, who is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away — and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. The hired hand runs away because a hired hand does not care for the sheep. I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father. And I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd. For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life in order to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it up again. I have received this command from my Father.”
Lord Jesus,
I am glad 
to be among your flock.

I remember 
hearing your voice 
first calling my name
years ago 
through my parents,
through the faithful saints 
of First Presbyterian, Sumter, SC,
through those adults who cared enough 
to know my name and know me.

And you keep calling
over and over
I hear your voice.

As a pastor,
may I be your helper 
keeping the flock.
I remember one of my mentors claimed his place 
as a sheepdog,
listening to the voice of the shepherd
one among the sheep
guiding, caring, protecting, 
running ahead, circling behind,
pushing forward, keeping together...

Keep calling, Lord,
help me be 
an obedient sheep dog,
helpful to you,
among the sheep,
always by your side,
quick to answer your call,
attentive to the needs of those under my care,
my head always ready 
to receive your loving pat
to heard those loving words,
"Good boy!"

May it be so today.

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