"I will seek what was lost and bring back what was driven away, bind up the broken and strengthen what was sick..." Ezekiel 34:16
Have you ever wondered why God uses sheep as a metaphor for His people? After dealing with the fluffy creatures, I know exactly why.
Sheep aren't the smartest of creatures.
They'll get into situations they can't get out of and when you spend an hour dragging them out, they'll head right back in.
They have no concept of danger. Every single day for the past eight years, my husband has fed the little flock we have, while talking to them and making sure they're all doing well. Every single day for the past eight years, the sheep freak out whenever they see him. "Stranger danger! Stranger danger!" they bleat while slamming into each other in panic. Yet, when one of the dogs--who thinks it's fun to chase the sheep--gets into the pasture, they just stand there, blinking.
Sheep are dumb.
But honestly, there are few creatures cuter than a little lamb. I mean, what can rival a fluffy cotton ball with four legs, big brown eyes and cute little twitching ears? Not a lot. And, thanks to their parentage, they need a lot of watching over. They need a good shepherd who won't let anything happen to them. Need a guide to lead them in those green pastures and beside those still waters.
Do you think the Lord looks at us like we look at those little lambs? Do you think He says, "Awwww, look how cute they are! Just adorable. Oh, oops, no, little one, don't head over by that fence. There are wolves over there..."
The really cool thing is once we're saved, once we're HIS lambs, He wants us to go out and seek the rest of the lost flock. He wants us to be the shepherds (or maybe co-shepherds, since HE'S the ultimate Good Shepherd), wants us to lead the lambs to safety, to steer them away from the wolves. He wants us to feed His lambs... giving them all that they need to grow, to mature.
He said to him the third time, "Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?" Peter was grieved because He said to him the third time, "Do you love Me?" And he said to Him, "Lord, You know all things; You know that I love You." Jesus said to him, "Feed My sheep. John 21:17
Jesus said several times that if we love Him, we will serve Him. I fear that I have failed in that area. I have been sitting on my blessed assurance for far too long. I've been too comfortable in my little pasture, hugging up on the other lambs that have already been saved. Going over by the fence where the wolves are to rescue the lost lambs is scary business.
I refuse to be afraid any longer. Now I want to storm those gates and drag the lost lambs away from the fire. I'm coming to realize that with God on my side, what is there to fear?
Philippians 2:17 says, “But I will rejoice even if I lose my life, pouring it out like a liquid offering to God, just like your faithful service is an offering to God. And I want all of you to share that joy.”
The lives of His lambs are just that... an offering to God. We love Him because He first loved us and because of that love, we want to do the things that bring Him joy. And that comes from seeing all His little lambs come to Him!
On that note, my husband and I are feeling strongly led to start an orphanage in Mexico. This is super scary for several reasons. First... Mexico. I mean, c'mon, drug cartels. Human traffickers. Corrupt government. Crime off the scale. (It's at this point in my argument that I realize I'm already living in that environment... insert eye-rolling emoji here).
Second... how in the WORLD are we going to accomplish this? I mean, we'd be leaving our job (we're co-managers of a ranch) and frankly, my books don't make enough to live on, not yet anyway. We can't buy any property, or even rent any, without money. Plus, there are things like food to consider. Health care for the children. Clothing. Transportation. How in the world...
Oh, wait. If it's of GOD, it's not of this world, right? Right.
So, leap of faith right off the cliff, we're praying for the "how" answers. If I could humbly ask one thing, it would be for you to pray with us for this huge calling. I mean, in my eyes, it's the Red Sea before me and pharaoh's army behind me, but I could be acting a bit dramatic. But we need our brothers and sisters in Christ for support. We can't do it without you!