In John 10:11;3 we read: Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” He calls His own by name… and in Psalm 23:1 The Lord is my Shepherd. Scripture gives us many pictures of God. Not only is He our Father and King, our Creator and Sustainer. He is also our Shepherd – and we are His sheep. Just like sheep we stray and get into all sorts of problems.. but God is there to rescue us from all harm and danger. The sweet Psalmist wrote of this wonderful God and Lord.. You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my every thought when far away. Psa.139:2. And Luke in Acts17:27 tells us: He is never far from any one of us.
Our God knows the deepest needs of our soul, and He cares about them. He knows the deepest desires of our hearts, and He cares about that too! He is not just the Shepherd of the sheep but the good Shepherd. The false, idol shepherd has come to steal and to kill and to destroy.. yes there is much difference between the real Shepherd and a hireling. But the purpose of the Good Shepherd is to give life in all its fullness.
He desires to care for us. He wants to feed and satisfy us with good things. He wants to protect us from the dangers and disappointments of life. He wants to lead us into green pastures and beside still waters. He wants to heal the brokenhearted and bind up their wounds. How dearly He cares for you and how dearly He cares for me too. He cares so deeply and so passionately that He has laid down His life for us. In John 13:1 we read: and having loved His own, He loved them right up to the end.
What is also so precious is that He calls each one of us by name. We know that He calls the stars by name. Yet He knows the very number of the hairs on our head. He knows our goings out and our comings in. He knows the pains and the difficulties we face. He knows the decisions and disasters that cover our paths. He knows the rejections and rebuffs we receive – shall He not, therefore, care about the deep longings and needs of each of His own. He knows. He cares. He understands.
These are very simple but very profound and precious truths. Our Good Shepherd knows. Our Good Shepherd cares. Our Good Shepherd understands.
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