Most assuredly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. And when he 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 not know the voice of strangers. (John 10:1-5)
He Calls Me By Name
The imagery of the shepherd was frequently used by Jesus. It became a ready palette of parallels showing the relationship of the Lord to those He came to save. John’s brush strokes of Jesus as the good shepherd show how lovely our relationship with the Lord will be when we submit to His protection. There are many noises that fill the air as sheep are crowded together in a fold. But the one voice the ears of the sheep are listening for is the voice of their shepherd. They listen for that distinctive voice because they know what that voice means. It means a bond molded through the years of fellowship with someone that led them to still waters and green pastures. In the dark of a stormy night they were shielded and protected by that voice. When the howl of the wolf shrilled the night air the shepherd stood guard. One sheep remembers when he had wandered away his master left the ninety and nine to rescue him from certain death. Their master’s voice is all they listen for.
As people of God we serve the Chief Shepherd. His voice will lead us through the difficult days of this week and help us find joy in our lives. Monday is a day of possibilities because of a wonderful day of worship yesterday and a week of powerful living for God before us. Monday’s are great days of faith. We start with a new resolve because our worship together on Sunday gave us hope. Our lives are focused on making the most of this week so that when the Lord’s day returns we can worship our Shepherd with praise and honor. Decisions this week? What does the Shepherd say? Disappointments will come but the Lord soothes our hurts with His oil of mercy. We may find ourselves a little lost this week. Guess who is looking for us? Our shepherd.
This week is a time to be a sheep. Trust in the Lord for His wisdom. Spend time each day learning more about the Shepherd who cares for you. Think this week about other sheep that may need your word of encouragement. Visit a lost sheep. Call a fellow sheep. Have a long conversation with the Shepherd and let Him know what is on your heart. He likes to hear the sheep calling out to Him. If you are hurting know the Son of God will pick you up and carry you in His warm and loving arms. He has a lot of sheep to keep up with but here is the best part: He knows your name. Yep. He knows exactly who you are because you are special to Him. Now how can Monday be bad when we know the Son of God knows YOUR name! Just think what the rest of the week is going to be like when you think about that every day!!!
Like sheep that get lost nibbling away at the grass because they never look up, we often focus so much on ourselves and our problems that we get lost. (Allen Klein)