Like sheep, my thoughts often wander. When the Lord gets my attention, I realize that I have left the green pastures to dwell on what is going on around me. My thoughts take me wherever they want to go. They must be trained by the Shepherd, so that I stay close to Him.
The apostle Paul tells us, “For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ.” 2 Corinthians 10:4-5
When the things of the world come to mind I am easily led into the barren fields among the rocks and thistles. In the cares and distractions of this world, I forget that my thoughts should be on that which is true, honest, just and pure, that which is lovely, of good report, of virtue and worthy of praise.
When my thoughts dwell on what I hear of the world, I am negating the Word of God, nurturing the seeds of the tares and wasting time that I could be sharing the good news of God’s grace.
Our Lord teaches us to remember whose we are. Once we were sheep without a shepherd going our own way, led by the god of this world through a barren wilderness, but now are returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of our souls.
Jesus, our Lord, has prepared green pastures and still waters; He restores my soul and leads me in the paths of righteousness.
Yes, we pray for our enemies and those who despitefully use us, but we don’t take up their lament, captive to the lost region in this world. Instead, we bring our thoughts captive to Christ so that we may speak the truth of God’s Word in love and compassion to those who live in this wilderness. This is our weapon against the stronghold in which the enemy would keep us bound. We focus on and praise our Lord for His goodness and His wonderful works to the children of men (Psalm 107:8).
The less we speak of what is happening in the world, the opinions and arguments ~ its grazing habits ~ the more we experience the obedience and happiness in our own pastures. Through our witness of Him, He draws others to Himself.
Gracious Father, we praise you that you have bought us, sought us, caught us, and brought us to Christ and taught us how to live as your children, your sheep in your pastures. Let us proclaim the legacy of your kingdom, so that you may draw more of your sheep to Christ where you have every good thing prepared for us. In Jesus’ name we pray and praise you. Amen.
Related Article: A Sheep’s View