Weekly Reflections from Pastor Barnes – 2/2/2018

Weekly Reflections from Pastor Barnes - 2/2/2018

The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. Psalm 23: 1

We call them our “children” – Bleu, Weez, Tiny, Lillie, Millie, Billie, Charlotte, Charlie, Wilbur, and Chewey. Eight out of the ten are rescues, left homeless by circumstances beyond their control. Lorra and I serve as surrogate parents for this motley bunch of puppies. They had nowhere to turn – we could not turn away. At this point in time, they all reside comfortably in a loving home caught in the embrace of two doting masters. When they were lost, the “shepherds” came looking. When they needed rest and relief, we offered “green pastures” and “still waters.” Grace arrives in the midst of the storm.

Let’s face it, when you’re lost your lost. You can’t find your way home on your own. You need help. According to D.L. Moody: “Dr. Andrew Bonar told me how, in the Highlands of Scotland, a sheep would often wander off into the rocks and get into places that they couldn’t get out of. The grass on these mountains is very sweet and the sheep like it, and they will jump down ten or twelve feet, and then they can’t jump back again, and the shepherd hears them bleating in distress. They may be there for days, until they have eaten all the grass. The shepherd will wait until they are so faint they cannot stand, and then they will put a rope around him, and he will go over and pull that sheep up out of the jaws of death. “Why don’t they go down there when the sheep first gets there?” I asked. “Ah!” He said, “they are so very foolish they would dash right over the precipice and be killed if they did!” And that is the way with men; they won’t go back to God till they have no friends and have lost everything. If you are a wanderer I tell you that the Good Shepherd will bring you back the moment you have given up trying to save yourself and are willing to let Him save you His own way.”

Unfortunately, according to this account, folks often don’t realize they’re lost until it is too late. The initiative to offer saving grace is always in the hands of the shepherd. Our puppies offer a fitting analogy: They had nowhere to turn – we could not turn away. At this point in time, they all reside comfortably in a loving home caught in the embrace of two doting masters. When they were lost, the “shepherds” came looking. When they needed rest and relief.