Proverbs 29 9-29-22

Is the path you are on leading you toward Jesus or away from Jesus? Turn to the Shepherd. He’s calling your name!

20 “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.” –Jesus

I used to say that not all roads lead to God, but to Jesus, who is the door/gate (John 10:7-11). I have since come to the conclusion that most roads on this earth are dead ends or lead to destruction (Proverbs 13:15, Matthew 7:13). The great news is that Jesus will travel any road to reach us, and when He does, He picks us up and carries us home. How do I know? Let’s read it:

Then Jesus told them this parable: “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent. Luke 15:3-7

I’m thinking that the sheep was glad to see the Shepherd, aren’t you? It was far away from the flock and safety, probably lost, maybe even caught in a thicket. The Shepherd was counting the sheep as they went into the pen for the night, so we know that it was late in the day. If it was twilight or even dark, that sheep was most likely terrified. You see, sheep have no natural defenses: no claws, no shell, no scent glands, only the Shepherd.

We are that way in this life. Contrary to popular opinion, we cannot take care of ourselves, especially spiritually. We need the Shepherd just like that lost sheep, and just like the 99 sheep in the pen. Our relationship with the Shepherd (Jesus) determines the kind of life we will have in the next five minutes, days, years, and eventually, in eternity. Let’s quit wandering off (doing things our way) and stay close to the Shepherd, shall we?

Abba, may I stay close to Your side. I do not want to wander off–I don’t even want to stray a little bit! The consequences of my sin (wandering) are too great (they affect others as well as myself), and the breach of fellowship with You is too costly. I don’t want to have to keep learning the same lessons. I not only want to stay close to You, I want to keep in step with You, as well (Galatians 5:25). May it be so, O Lord. Amen.

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