Shepherding Our Flock | The Qualities Of A Shepherdess

The Qualities of a shepherdessHow wonderful that God reveals Himself to us by different names. If we only knew Him by one name, we would not understand the complete fullness of who He is.

One of the beautiful and tender names of God is Jehovah-Ra'ah, the Lord my Shepherd, the one who bends down to tend our needs (Psalm 113:5-9) and who protects us and gather us up in His arms (Isaiah 40:11). This name God speaks of the intimate relationship we can experience with Him, for the word "shepherd" also means "to be a friend, a companion, to keep company with."

A Bedouin shepherd in Israel testified that even if he were blindfolded he would know each one of his sheep by feeling their faces.

Our Shepherd wants to have an intimate and tender relationship with us. The psalmist calls God, "MY Shepherd," and repeatedly the Great Shepherd of the sheep calls us "MY flock."

As a Shepherdess, we teach our children that He wants to be their personal Savior and Shepherd. We will be careful not to do anything in our home that will grieve our Shepherd who wants to be intimately involved in everything we do.

Our Shepherd has a great shepherding heart and He wants us to shepherd our little flock in the same way He shepherds His flock. Shepherding is an enormous undertaking and from the Scriptures and the Hebrew meanings of the word "shepherd" we find that it includes the following tender and powerful ministries. You will see that a shepherd must be both brave and tender. Let God teach you as you read them.

It means befriending with an intimate relationship, binding and bandaging up the hurt and broken, bravely fighting off all enemies, bringing back the straying and wandering ones, carrying the lambs close to your heart, comforting, encouraging the weary, eliminating fear in the dark and anxious times, feeding, gathering in your arms and to your heart, gently leading, guarding and watching over your flock, guiding your flock on the "right track," healing the sickly, increasing the flock, keeping them safe, leading to rest and rich green pastures, nourishing, persevering until you find the lost, preparing a table, protecting, providing, rescuing when they turn to by-paths, restoring (renewing, reviving, and refreshing), ruling with wisdom and discretion, sacrificing and laying down your life for your flock, saving your flock, searching and seeking the lost ones, strengthening the weak, and tenderly folding your flock. My, what an amazing mission you have as a shepherdess.

Embrace this beautiful role. It is not insignificant. I would suggest you read the above paragraph over and over. It is too much to comprehend in one reading. Did you know that shepherding is talked about in the Bible from Genesis to Revelation? God chose two of the greatest leaders of all time from shepherding the sheep, Moses and King David (Exodus 3:1-10 and Psalm 78:70-72). God looks for parents who will shepherd after His own heart (Jeremiah 3:15). And because our little flock is really His flock, He requires them at our hand (Ezekiel 34:10). He wants us to diligently know the state of our little flock (Proverbs 27:23).

How can we be the shepherdess He wants us to be? We certainly can't do it in our own strength and wisdom, but be encouraged for Micah 5:4 tells us that Jesus Christ will "stand and feed in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God." If that is how He shepherds, that's the only way we can do it, too. You can do it in HIS strength.

Nancy Campbell
www.aboverubies.org

 

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