John 14:6

...Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

Friday, September 23, 2005

The Good Shepherd Will Never Leave You Nor Forsake You!

So many things have been happening in my life these days. The Lord has been using me to speak life to those who may be struggling with various trials and tribulations.

Again and again, I hear the same stories-not only from brothers & sisters in The Church, but from people at my job as well. The un-saved don't know any better, but we who are saved know what we must do-we need to go to The Rock!
So many become "lost" while inn the midst of a trial. The trial may involve marriage issues, the death of a loved one, work issues, faith issues, some sort of bondage, or other things. Time and time again, I see brothers and sisters in The Lord stumble because they tried to solve things in their own strength, or because they feel that "God has deserted me". Sometimes, they even follow "another way" to get what their flesh craves.
The Lord has put two scriptures on my heart to share with you all. One is John 10:1-5 which states: "Most assuredly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. Yet they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.” Jesus used this illustration, but they did not understand the things which He spoke to them. (NKJ)
The other is Deuteronomy 31:8 which says: "And the LORD, He is the One who goes before you. He will be with you, He will not leave you nor forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed.” (NKJ)
There are so many pressures in this world. There is the pressure to conform, the pressure to perform. Sometimes in our walk, you may feel as if you are not "part of the crowd". You may feel left out. On the fringe? Sometimes when we try to "solve" these life issues ourselves, we do things in our own flesh. There is no other description for what we sometimes do in a trial-we think that we can solve things. Sometimes we even dismiss God's voice when He is speaking to us. We may want to hear A voice-ANY voice that will tell us what our flesh wants to hear. I see this happening time after time, especially in The Church. People hear of a brother or sister in a trial, and offer help, offer to pray. We often hear "Thank you, but I can do this on my own" or "I've got it under control", or "So-and-so told me I am doing this the right way".

My question to you is : Who is your shepherd? If we look closer at the verses from John and goto verses 11-13, Jesus says: "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them. The hireling flees because he is a hireling and does not care about the sheep." (NKJ)

Jesus gave His life for us on the Cross. Our sins are forgiven. We have eternal life. He expects that we follow Him. We need to follow Him and serve Him with a pure heart. Nobody else died on The Cross for us. Allah didn't. Buddha didn't. Gandhi didn't. Ophra didn't. No actor died on The Cross for you. No rock musician died on The Cross for you. You certainly didn't either……. There is NOBODY else that is worthy of our worship, our praise and our service. Nobody cares for us like our Savior, Jesus Christ!

Unlike the "other sheep", Our Lord promises never to leave us. We may stumble. We may even fall, but He is ALWAYS there to pick us up. At one of his crusades, Billy Graham once said: "It's not about falling, it's about getting back up". God will always be there to help you up again! Can I get an AMEN????

You may be going through a trial. It may have been (or may still be) the most intense trial you have ever experienced. You need to keep your eyes on Jesus-the Author and Finisher of our faith. Even thinking that God has deserted you is wrong. His Word states He will never leave you, nor forsake you. Thinking that you will solve your own trails takes away from the sovereignty of God.

We need to do some things when we are praying for God to take us (or someone else) through a trial. We need FIRST-to search our own hearts, and see if there is any sin that may be holding us back from seeing the deliverance of God. We must confess it to The Lord and ask for forgiveness. Second, we need to ask God to search us and reveal-through His Holy Spirit-any un-confessed sin. We must ask God to take the burden of those sins from us. We must then pray for God, through His Holy Spirit to give us peace, to give us wisdom, and to take us THROUGH the trial. Our flesh wants us OUT of the trial, but if God took us out of every trial, we would NOT see God glorified in anything!

I pray that if you are going through a trial, that you are keeping your eyes on Jesus. I always go to God's Word when I need encouragement. Although my brothers and sisters in The Lord do encourage me, there is NOTHING like the Word of God! I pray that you dive headfirst into God's Word. I pray that He speaks to your heart. I pray that He encourages you. I pray that He gives you peace like a river! I feel a song coming on!!!

Matthew 6:33 says: "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you." (KJV)

Live it! Learn from it!

Jesus loves you and so do I!!!