My Sheep 
A Psalm of David.
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever. 
(Psalms 23:1-6)
The first words that many of us learned by rote, not so? 
Such beautiful words, so comforting and full of promise of God's love and protection to us whom He created. 
Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. 
(John 14:1-3)
From reading the Bible and listening to our Pastor in church on a Sunday, we encounter many promises, yes promises, made by God to His people. 
Even the various names of God in the original tongues bear witness of His love and care for us: 
Jehovah-rophe revealed God in the role of Healer of our sicknesses of body and mind; Jehovah-nissi, the Power or Standard of our victories in life's conflicts. And in Jehovah-rohi, the Shepherd of His people. 
The people who we know as the Jews, even from before the time of Abraham, actually at the time of Abel, Adam's son, were pastoral people, they used the wool of sheep for clothing, the milk and meat as primary food and therefore knew the importance of protecting their flocks from marauders, even to extent, like David, of killing lions and bears. 
So, when God spoke to His people through the prophets as being their Shepherd, they understood better than we about what was meant. 
Whether we believe God's promises to the extent that God requires of us is not the purpose of this writing as it has been dealt with in other writings on this web site1
What we need to understand here is the relationship between Shepherd and sheep. 
Many professing Christians, and this writer was one, became so important in their own eyes because they had been chosen by God (out of love), that God wasn't the light of their existence. 
We used to ask each other "Is Jesus in the Christian car that you drive? Do you allow Him in the front seat to navigate? Do you allow Him to drive? 
Being a new Christian (and a charismatic), I printed visiting cards that bore the legend at the top "Jesus is the Rock of my Foundation." Those little cards are still printed, but the legend now reads "Jesus Christ is Lord." The importance of "me" has disappeared. 
Another example is the time of praise and worship at the beginning of many church services. While many are very stirring and uplifting, the words "I", "I will", "me", "we" seem to crop up time and again, the song being repeated many times. Do these songs stir the emotions, or the spirit? Is this not like that Pharisee in the temple, blowing his own trumpet before God while praying? 
And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him. 
(Matthew 6:5-8)
And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. 
(Luke 18:9-14)
A person that we are acquainted with recently purchased a shining new motorcar and after a month or so changed the standard registration plates to "777 XYZ", the XYZ being the initials of the wife. The number 7 being God's number of perfection, this would seem to indicate a statement of faith, of Christianity, not so? How important is this wife in the scheme of being a Christian? Why her initials and not his? Once when witnessing to this couple, the wife stated that she was considering getting baptised Biblically and would invite me to the ceremony! 
Here is a story printed in a church newsletter: 
Every Sunday afternoon, after the morning service at their church, the Pastor and his eleven year-old son would go out into their town and hand out Gospel tracts. This particular Sunday afternoon, as it came time for the Pastor and his son to go to the streets with their tracts, it was very cold outside as well as pouring down rain. The boy bundled up in his warmest and driest clothes and said "OK Dad, I'm ready." 
Dad responds, "Son, it's very cold outside and it's pouring down rain." 
The boy gives his Dad a surprised look, asking, "But Dad, aren't people still going to hell, even though it's raining?" Dad answers, "Son, I am not going out in this weather." 
Despondently the boy asks, "Dad, can I go - Please?" 
His father hesitated for a moment then said, "Son, you can go. Here's the tracts, be careful son." "Thanks, Dad!" And with that he was off and out into the rain. 
This eleven year-old boy walked the streets of the town going door- to-door and handing everybody he met in the street a Gospel tract. After two hours of walking in the rain he was soaking bone-chilled wet and down to the very last tract. He stopped on a corner and looked for someone to hand a tract to but the streets were totally deserted. 
Then he turned toward the first home he saw and started up the sidewalk to the front door and rang the doorbell. He rang the bell - but nobody answered. He rang it again and again but still no one answered. He waited but still no answer. 
Finally this eleven year-old trooper turned to leave but something stopped him. 
Again, he turned to the door and rang the bell and knocked loudly on the door with his fist. He waited, something holding him there on the front porch. He rang again, and this time the door slowly opened. Standing in the door way was a very sad-looking elderly lady. She softly asked, "What can I do for you, son?" 
With radiant eyes and a smile that lit up her world, this little boy said, "Ma'am, I'm sorry if I disturbed you, but I just want to tell you that Jesus Really Does Love You! I came to give you my very last Gospel tract which will tell you all about Jesus and His great love." With that, he handed her his last tract, and turned to leave. She called to him as he departed, "Thank you son! And God bless you!" 
Well, the following Sunday morning in church, Pastor Dad was in the pulpit and as the service began he asked, "Does anybody have a testimony or want to say anything?" Slowly, in the back of the church, an elderly lady stood to her feet. As she began to speak, a look of glorious radiance came from her face. 
"None of you in this church know me. I've never been here before. You see, before last Sunday I was not a Christian. My husband has passed on, some time ago, leaving me totally alone in this world. Last Sunday, being a particularly cold and rainy day, it was even more so in my heart. . . . as I came to the end of the line where I no longer had any hope or will to live." 
"So I took a rope and a chair and ascended the stairway into the attic of my home. I fastened the rope securely to a rafter in the roof then stood on the chair and fastened the other end of the rope around my neck." 
"Standing on that chair, so lonely and broken-hearted, I was about to leap off when suddenly the loud ringing of my doorbell downstairs startled me. I thought "I'll wait a minute, and whoever it is will go away." 
"I waited and waited - but the ringing doorbell seemed to get louder and more insistent and then the person ringing also started knocking loudly. I thought to myself again, "Who on earth could this be? Nobody ever rings my bell or comes to see me!"" 
" I loosened the rope from my neck and started for the front door, all the while the bell rang louder and louder. When I opened the door and looked I could hardly believe my eyes! There on my front porch was the most radiant and angelic little boy I had ever seen in my life! His smile! Oh, I could never describe it to you! And the words that came from his mouth caused my heart, that had long been dead, to leap to life as he exclaimed with a cherub-like voice, "Ma'am, I just came to tell you that JESUS REALLY DOES LOVE YOU." Then he gave me this Gospel tract that I now hold in my hand. As the little angel disappeared back out into the cold and rain, I closed my door and read slowly every word of this Gospel tract. Then I went up to my attic to get my rope and chair. I wouldn't be needing them anymore. You see, I am now a happy child of the King, and since the address of your church was on the back of this Gospel tract, I have come here to personally say, 'Thank you to God's little angel who came just in the nick of time, and by so doing, spared my soul from an eternity in Hell.'" 
There were now no dry eyes in the church. As shouts of praise and honour to the Lord resounded off the very rafters of the building, Pastor Dad descended from the pulpit to the front pew where the little angel was seated. He took him in his arms and sobbed uncontrollably. 
Beautiful, not so? Not many dry eyes around. However, is there enough glory given to the Living God, Jehovah-M'kaddish who sets His people apart for His holy service? What about Jehovah-rohi who added one more sheep to His flock? 
We each need to be taught by God as to Who He really is, and we can only do this when we place ourselves at His feet in complete abandonment of our pride, our egos, believing that El Shaddai, the Almighty God is holy and righteous and love, and willing to enfold us in His arms. 
John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven. Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am sent before him. He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom's voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled. He must increase, but I must decrease. He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all. And what he hath seen and heard, that he testifieth; and no man receiveth his testimony. He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true. For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him. The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him. 
(John 3:27-36)
Also, that He is Elohim, the Triune Creator.
You will need to learn that you need this Great Almighty Shepherd to guide you along the path to your eventual destination, the Celestial City. 
The shepherds of the Middle-East, even today, bring their flocks into a central sheepfold each evening with a "night watchman" in charge. Early each morning the individual shepherds come to the sheepfold and when they are all there the sheep are released in a bundle. Each shepherd then starts calling his flock together because each sheep knows his master's voice. In this way are the flocks separated and each shepherd can go his way, leading his sheep to their pasture. 
Every now and then a lamb is born that is rebellious and will not listen to the voice of the shepherd. This means that the shepherd cannot protect it properly and very often results either in the lamb being slaughtered for its meat, or that a leg is broken and then set by the shepherd. This results in immobility for the lamb and the shepherd feeds it by hand, carrying it around with him until the leg is healed. At that time the lamb will have learned to depend on the shepherd and will follow him around everywhere. 
One of the great promises that Jesus gave was that His sheep hear His voice: 
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out. And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers. This parable spake Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which he spake unto them. Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep. I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep. And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd. Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father. There was a division therefore again among the Jews for these sayings. And many of them said, He hath a devil, and is mad; why hear ye him? Others said, These are not the words of him that hath a devil. Can a devil open the eyes of the blind? And it was at Jerusalem the feast of the dedication, and it was winter. And Jesus walked in the temple in Solomon's porch. Then came the Jews round about him, and said unto him, How long dost thou make us to doubt? If thou be the Christ, tell us plainly. Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness of me. But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
(John 10:1-27)
What a blessing to hear the voice of the Living God and feel His presence of protection and love! 
What a privilege to be an example to others:
This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness. But ye have not so learned Christ; If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another. 
(Ephesians 4:17-25)
And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away. 
(1 Peter 5:4)