A friend who had visited Israel told me about a bus ride into the countryside. Unexpectedly, the bus stopped at an intersection, and she saw drivers leaning out of their windows and shaking their fists, honking their horns and shouting. Amidst the din of the impatient drivers, she also heard the sound of bleating sheep. The sheep aimlessly wandered in the road or stood frozen, afraid of the noise, as their shepherds fended off attacks from the raving motorists.
Finally, one shepherd called loudly into the noisy air. Then, the second shepherd whistled, and the third shepherd shouted to his sheep. Amazed, my friend watched as the confused, noisy, white mass began to separate into three distinct groups, each following its own shepherd. The chaos subsided, and drivers returned to their cars as each shepherd led his own flock away from the chaotic intersection and into the rocky hills.
One day, Jesus told a crowd that He was a shepherd, the true shepherd. He wasn’t making up a new name. No, He was reminding people that He was The One that God had promised to send. Check out what the Old Testament prophet Ezekiel said in Ezekiel 34.
As a shepherd, Jesus said that His sheep would recognize His voice, that they would listen for Him and come to Him.
There’s no shortage of voices vying for our attention. Most of us hear demands shouting at us from the moment we open our eyes in the morning until we close them at night, if we can fall sleep. Even my smart phone can distract me with ringing or whistling because someone is calling, texting, following, liking, posting, pinning.
Since He’s the shepherd, He’s calling.
His sheep know His voice, so listen for Him. Find a quiet place, and just wait and listen.
Ask Him to help you to hear Him among the voices in your head or the noise around you. Pick up a Bible or open an app and read a little bit. Those are His words to you, dear sheep.