By Becky Wilson
Are you driving a herd or leading a flock?
A good shepherd doesn’t drive his flock. He has to lead them because...well, sheep are scared and stupid. Comparing a flock of stampeding lambs to a herd of 1,500 pound cattle running at you at 30 miles an hour leaves no doubt as to the wisdom of a cowboy driving his herd from behind. But you are left to wonder whose best interest does the cowboy have in a crisis?
The shepherd walks ahead of his flock; his rod and staff visible at all times as an assurance that he will single handedly fight off the predators who come to kill and destroy, find shelter in a storm and green pastures to graze in and there will never be cause for a stampede because the blood of only one Lamb has ever been necessary.
We have all been given a flock: our families, friends, church community groups, and at work. If we try to drive them like cattle, we will eventually become the sound of the crack of a bullwhip in their ears and we will literally drive them away. Our prayer should always be for the strength to be gentle.
If we follow Jesus’ example and lead the way; confident in God’s enduring love, assured of the sacrifice on the cross, and letting the Holy Spirit shine through us, the Shepherd who shepherds the shepherds will guide us to deliver our flock to safe haven.
“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He leadeth me beside the still waters…”
Ask God to make you gentle as you share truth with those who are hearing it for the first time.