What person, who is not a follower of Christ, do you know who is content? Who doesn’t see an emptiness in their life and work and strive for things to “fill it”? Who doesn’t long for a stable eternal relationship? Who doesn’t want more than what the few years of this life offers?
This is a world of emptiness. We are born in sin and we are born with an emptiness in our hearts. We long for things to make us feel better, but mostly better about ourselves because, even though we deny it, we know we are broken and sinful and missing something.
False shepherds have always offered the same thing, they have offered paths that you can purchase something to fill that void with. For the Jews, that something was adherence to the law. If you just follow it closely enough, devoutly enough, you will be filled. But, no one was. They longed for something more. They waited for a Messiah.
False shepherds today do the same thing. Religious leaders, government leaders, teachers, scientists, business leaders, you name it, all are “selling” something for you to do or earn or acquire to fill the whole.
But, Jesus takes a different approach. Remember John 7? On the last and greatest day of the feast, Jesus stood up and called out in a loud voice, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. To the one who believes in Me, it is just as the scriptures have said, ‘streams of living water will flow from within him.’”
Jesus offers to fill us up to over flowing. Not by something we earn or do or acquire, but simply by accepting His gift of the spirit.
If you have accepted that gift, do you drink it in to overflowing or are you still trying to make room to be like the non-believers and run after fulfillment from other things? If you have not accepted the gift, how full are you filling today?
Ezek: only care for self not flock, did not search for lost sheep, ruled harshly and brutally
John: climb into the pen not by the gate, thieves and robbers, strangers to the sheep, not followed
11-16. I myself will search for my sheep and look after them. I will rescue them and bring them into their own land, tend to them in good pasture. I myself will tend my sheep, bind up the injured and strengthen the weak. I will shepherd the flock with justice.
He is the only bridge between a world of sinful man and an eternal life with a Holy God. His death and resurrection opens the gate that otherwise is closed.
Know the voice of the true shepherd. Read, Hear and Heed His word in scripture. Study, pray, fast, teach, live under His authority.
There is a peace and joy that is greater than anything else. It does not make sense if viewed through a physical world, but it is one that give comfort and compassion for others.