The Good Shepherd


christmaspraisejimdavenport.meIn Biblical times the life and risks for a shepherd were well understood by almost everyone.  Shepherding was considered to be a lowly, lonely, dangerous and dirty position  … usually left to the youngest men of the family.  Among other things, sheep had to be protected, fed, led to good pasture land and water sources, kept together, clipped and groomed.  When a sheep strayed from the flock the shepherd was responsible for locating the wayward one and returning it safely to the fold.  How appropriate that Jesus would refer to Himself as The Good Shepherd … a shepherd willing to lay down His life for His sheep.

John 10:11 (ESV) –  I am The Good ShepherdThe Good Shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.

In his youth King David was a shepherd.  He completely understood the full-time responsibility that a shepherd has for each of his sheep.  So symbolically he fully understood God’s care for him when he wrote “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.  He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: He leadeth me beside the still waters.  He restoreth my soul: He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.  Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.  (Psalm 23:1-4, KJV)

Jesus cares deeply for each of His “sheep” … especially those that have strayed or are “lost.”  He does not rebuke or punish the wayward lamb.  Instead, when the lost lamb is found ALL of heaven celebrates!   Luke records a parable of Jesus that so typifies The Good Shepherd:

TheGoodShepherdLuke 15:3-7 (ESV) – So He told them this parable: “What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.”

Oh Lord, I praise You for being The Good Shepherd.  So many times when I have strayed You have found me and lifted me to Your shoulders.  Thank You for showing me Your mercy and sacrificing Yourself for the forgiveness of my sins.  Thank You Jesus for being my Savior.  Thank You Jesus for dwelling within me in the person of the Holy Spirit!  Thank You Jesus for being the only Shepherd that I will ever need!!  In Your strong name I make this prayer, Amen and Amen.

 

About jimdavenport

Jim Davenport resides in the USA in Northeast Georgia, is a member of a Southern Baptist Church and is a retired Christian business man. Jim and his wife Charlotte have one son and daughter in law, Keven and Amy, four grandchildren - Ashlyn (Davenport) & Josh Murphy, and Mason & Rebecca Davenport. We have three great-grandchildren, Rhory Camile Murphy, Rhett Levi Murphy and Sawyer Joshua Murphy. Jim and Charlotte own a mountain get-away home located on Lookout Mountain in Alabama where they spend many spring, summer and fall days working in their raised bed organic garden. Jim has served as a Deacon and Trustee in his local church most of his adult life and on the Executive Committee and Finance Committee of the Board of Trustees of Shorter University, an intentionally Christian institution located in Rome, Georgia. Jim has a passion for the word of God and has always believed that Christian principles should guide every aspect of his life. He also loves Christian music and often served as a tenor soloist in his church. One of the highlights of his life was the nearly 20 years he spent singing with The Good News, a Southern Gospel quartet. Jim served as an Information Technology professional his entire working career of 50 years holding senior positions in and consulting with hundreds of world-class organizations in the United States, Canada, Europe, Central and South America, Australia and New Zealand. Jim remains as President and CEO of InfoSys Solutions Associates, Inc. and is a retired partner of IT Governance Partners, LLC, both of which are “Trusted Advisor” technology and business consulting firms. Jim has authored a number of books available at www.jimdavenport.me/jims-books. His blog has ben read by readers from more than 170 countries. Jim holds both a BS and an MS in Mathematics from Georgia State University in Atlanta, Georgia and completed Management Development Training at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.
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2 Responses to The Good Shepherd

  1. jimdavenport says:

    In response to Xxx:

    Xxx, in spite of our ills we have so much for which we can be thankful. As humans our flesh is not exempt from physical trials. But God as our Good Shepherd gives His children the strength and comfort we need to face ALL of life’s issues … no matter what they might be! May we have the faith to face our earthly difficulties with the full knowledge that an eternal prize awaits us … a prize made possible through nothing we have done. Charlotte and I will pray for you sweet sister in Christ.

    Abiding in Him,

    Jimmy

    Like

  2. jimdavenport says:

    Begin forwarded message:

    From: xxxxxx
    Date: December 30, 2014 at 6:31:40 AM EST
    To: “jamesldavenport@gmail.com”
    Subject: RE: The Good Shepherd

    Hello Jimmy,

    I want to thank you for this particular message. I know that God is good and for a little while last night I stumbled. You see, I have cancer again and I am so tired. I asked Him, why? I have tried to be a good follower and I tell others that God is good. I know that God loves me and there is a reason for all of this and I will just have to keep the faith and know He is God. After all, the Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want….

    Thank you Jimmy for this gentle reminder. Xxx

    Like

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