Watch Out and Watch Up

Matthew 9:36

Growing up, we spent a lot of time at a farm just down the road from where we lived. Once you turned off the road onto the lane leading toward the farmer’s house, the barn and the pasture with the cows in it was on the left, and on the right was a fenced-in area that had sheep in it. I’m not sure why they had the sheep, I don’t remember the farmer doing anything with them. What I do know is they were very skittish. They responded only to the farmer, but with everyone else, they were very fearful and would run away from them. They didn’t follow any one sheep as their leader. No, fear got the best of them and they just ran in total confusion.

In that sheep pasture, there were some obstacles, large brush piles, and some old junk cars. When the sheep would begin to run, they would actually trip over these obstacles or quickly change their direction as they ran into one. It was a sad scene in that pasture in all their confusion.

Jesus observed the crowds of his day as being in the same state, sheep, without a shepherd, confused and helpless. It caused the Lord to have compassion for them.

Things haven’t changed much. The same thing is happening with people today as it did when Jesus walked the earth. People are spiritually confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. We have a tendency of being skittish and confused as we run in different directions. Even with the help of good spiritual leaders we still find ourselves running into the obstacles of life. We get ourselves backed into corners and then try to jump over things that are impossible to escape from.

But thank God we have a shepherd, a Good Shepherd. His name is Jesus, and he has just as much compassion for us today as he did when this verse of scripture was written. Our Good Shepherd will always protect us from any danger and will lead us down the path of righteousness. We will never need to be confused and helpless ever again.

Lord, thank you for protecting and leading us. Also, thank you for helping us avoid running into the obstacles of life.




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