FROM THE PULPIT: Are you hearing voices – or The Voice?

Published: Friday, July 19, 2013 at 06:48 PM.

Whose voice do you hear? Whose voice do you listen to?

The Bible tells us that the Lord is our Shepherd. We are his people and the sheep of his pasture. Jesus himself is our Good Shepherd. We are to listen to his voice, just as sheep listen to the voice of their shepherd.

I think this is a wonderful analogy - us being sheep and Jesus being our shepherd. A shepherd knows his sheep. Individual sheep in a flock all look alike to the untrained eye. A good shepherd, however, can tell them apart.

A man who was tending a large flock explained this to a friend who expressed surprise at his familiarity with each animal. “See that sheep over there?” he asked. “Notice how its toes turn in a little. The one behind it has a squint; the next one has a patch of wool off its back; ahead is one with a distinguishing black mark, while the one closest to us has a small piece torn out of its ear.” His friend had never stopped to think about how all the sheep might be different and that the shepherd would know all his sheep.

That is how it is with our Lord. He knows each of us —completely — with all our individual strengths and weaknesses, all our successes and failures. He watches over each of us with discerning love and sympathetic understanding.

Do you hear the Shepherd’s voice calling your name? Listen to his voice. Listen to the voice that tells you that you are loved, that you are precious, and that you are a priceless treasure. Know the Shepherd, just as the Shepherd knows you.

The Rev. Mark Broadhead is Laurel Hill Presbyterian Church and First Presbyterian Church of Crestview’s pastor.

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