The post last Thursday addressed my frustration over how my ministry family has been treated by individuals in congregations. One friend reminded me there ARE sheep! And they are right… in the church there ARE sheep, there IS wheat. These individuals are much more numerous than goats or tares, they’re just not as vocal.
Larue & Danny… Wiley & Irene… Nettie, Robbie, Ron, & Amp… Grover, Mark, Joan, & Clyde… Jim & Roxie… Spence & Don… and another 100 I could name!
Those people are representative of people who bless ministers. They are encouragers, prayer partners, helpers, defenders, and friends. Sheep are unlike wolves, they are usually quiet and peaceful. They rarely complain or criticize. They find ways to be helpful and supportive. They are always trying to be part of the solution rather than the problem. Sheep are the reason ministers have hope God continues to work in His people.
If there were a church full of people like those above, it would be worth paying them to be their under-shepherd (Rather than being paid to serve them). Because I know those above, and many more like them, I’m confident the church would be peaceful. I’m confident when a disagreement came up, there would be a servant attitude that sought reconciliation and restoration rather than division or accusations. When I picture those people, and those like them, they are smiling. They have a positive and encouraging word. They are a joy to be around. They think of others before themselves.
I guess a congregation where everyone was like the ones I’m thinking of does not exist… yet. But one day it will. One day God will separate the sheep from the goats. His people will be gathered together and live forever in His presence. Until then, I like to spend my time and energy being around those who bear much fruit and so prove themselves to be disciples! God bless His sheep!!
Amen and Amen, my brother!
Bless you and your family!
And bless the sheep and wheat…
What a wonderful church it would be and a joyful place to worship our God. Sadly, we never see ourselves as goats and tares. “Holy Spirt open our eyes that we might see and confess our sins.” Encouraging post…thanks!
Amen. I agree with Faye, how great would it be to be in a flock consisting of sheep only. We as believers will ultimately reach this goal when we enter into heaven. Until then we must choose to serve in flocks that often contain wolves, goats and other predators. We place our lives,trust and confidence in our Shepard Jesus and in his undershepards (Pastors). Too often we forget that sheep are prey animals, with the Shepard as our only protection. In this case we have the ultimate protector, Jesus. The Pastors are the ones who are responsible for feeding, nurturing, protecting, and guiding the flock. This awesome responsibility is not given lightly. Pastors are the first line of defense against the predators. They put themselves and their families at risk to protect the flock. Sometimes they themselves fall victim to the predators. Many sheep are oblivious to the undershepard, however many recognize him for what what he is. I am proud to be a vocal sheep, constantly calling my brothers/sisters to follow the Shepard. Our flock may be small but through the efforts all of the good shepards our numbers will grow and we remain safe. Thanks again for being a good shepard.
Well said spence!
We are sheep and part of a large group consisting of people who claim to be our brothers and sisters in Christ! I had a interesting conversation with a brother yesterday. He admitted to having questions about a lot of things concerning creation, why things are happening in the world like they are, the validity of Gods Holy Word and eternity. He really caught me off guard because I truly felt he was secure in his faith and belief that he is saved. I attempted to share with him from 2 Timothy 3:16, sharing with him the absolute belief and faith that Gods word is Holy, inspired by God, profitable for instruction and correction. And that it equips us as His children to live our lives for Him. It enables us to be able to witness to the lost and encourage those who are in need. What I discovered for myself yesterday is that there are a lot of people who I feel are sheep in our presence that are really struggling and truly need encouragement and may even be lost. We must continue to live our lives as witnesses for Christ and love our brethren as Christ loves us. And conduct ourselves in Christlike manner in everything we do. We are influencing people every day, I pray that it’s always in a way that glorifies Christ.