The Lord is My Shepherd

jesus_shepherd_deweyI was a substitute teacher for Hannah’s primary class, and really learned some things. We talked about the parable of the shepherd from the New Testament and I saw a lesson in there that I had not noticed before.

John 10:1-15

1 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.
2 But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep.
3 To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out.
4 And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.
5 And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.
6 This parable spake Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which he spake unto them.
7 Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.
8 All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them.
9 I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.
10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.
12 But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep.
13 The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep.
14 I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.
15 As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.

I know that Jesus Christ is The Good Shepherd, and I know He teaches in parables so that we can apply the principles to our own lives. As a mother I can’t help but see the parallel between shepherding and parenting. I noticed that there are two approaches to parenting here. One is as a shepherd- who leads, loves, provides nourishment, protects, sacrifices, and knows each of his children and their needs. The other is a hireling who has only taken the position to gain something for himself or because it was the default- he pushes instead of leads, is not willing to sacrifice, is not interested in protecting, thinks of the sheep as something to control and will quit trying when the job requires too much. I realize that these are extreme examples and not everyone falls into one or the other of these categories. But I’m so grateful to have friends and family who are such wonderful examples of parenting as the shepherd. I learn from watching them, and strive to be more Christlike in my parenting because I know how important each one of my little sheep are.

I can feel the devil sending in his thieves to destroy the souls of the rising generation. And to add one more metaphor to the mix: I almost feel like there is a flood of evil and Rob and I are constantly bailing out our family’s boat. I know that God is watching over us all, and that my bailing bucket will get lighter as I look to Him with faith- and never stop bailing. I am optimistic for the future and know that we will survive the floods and reach our loving Shepherd.

1 Comment

  1. Tami
    Jun 28, 2010

    Thanks for sharing this insight Amy!