I am the Good Shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.
The name Good Shepherd is the most tender description of Jesus. It spells trust, intimacy, and belonging.
The very fact that we need Him as our Good Shepherd reveals our vulnerability and His ability to be all we need.
Jesus, the perfect one, willingly yielded to human care so that we could receive His perfect care. The hands that created us became vulnerable, the hands of a baby, reaching out for protection, care, guidance, and nourishment. They became hands nailed to a tree, marked with our scars of freedom, and closing the gap between us and our Creator God.
We’re often described as sheep going our own way and in need of a shepherd to guide, protect, and nourish us. Out of perfect love for His people, prone to drift and stray, God comes to us as a Shepherd.
He will feed his flock like a shepherd. He will carry the lambs in his arms, holding them close to his heart.
The Father doesn’t want any of His sheep to be lost. His love is relentless and His kindness unbeatable, leading each one of us back to His perfect care and protection.
He sent His Son as the Good Shepherd to “seek and to save those who are lost.” (Luke 19:10)
Jesus became our Good Shepherd.
In Genesis, one bite of fruit spoiled perfect harmony which existed between man and God. One bite caused man and woman to hide in fear and shame. Trust was broken… Communion cut…
God knew. God saw. And God called out: “Where are you?”
“Where are you?” were not words of anger. They weren’t even words to shame.
“Where are you?” were words of deep love, calling man and woman back to Himself. They were words born out of disappointment and grief at what had been lost. “Where are you?” called man and woman out of hiding and back to what they were created for… relationship, intimacy, harmony, and communion. They were words that would begin the process of restoring all that was dear to the Father’s heart.
Coming out of hiding meant confronting what forced them into hiding in the first place. The best place to do that was face to face with the One who had created them, knew them, and loved them.
God is still lovingly calling man and woman back to Himself.
The unconditional, perfect love displayed at creation was the same love orchestrating the arrival of our Good Shepherd as a vulnerable baby. It was the same love that grew Him from a baby to a man and led Him to the cross so that we could come out of hiding.
This Good Shepherd, full of perfect love, gave His life so that we could experience perfect love. He gave His life so that we can respond to the words “Where are you?” by coming face to face with our Creator.
Perfect love casts out fear. Perfect love covers shame. Perfect love opens the door to perfect harmony with our Good Shepherd.
Jesus is our Good Shepherd. Good meaning everything that is beautiful, righteous, noble, and wholesome. He provides perfect care…perfect protection… perfect guidance… perfect nourishment.
The Good Shepherd leads us home to the Father by restoring that which was broken and spoiled. He restores our souls. He binds up our hearts.
He, the beautiful, righteous, noble, and wholesome Good Shepherd completes us… perfects us.
The Lord is my Shepherd; I have all that I need.
In our Good Shepherd we lack nothing.
Our Good Shepherd relieves us of the burden to strive, to perform, to contrive, and to manipulate. Being in His presence and resting in all that He is and has done for us removes the masks of pretence and lets the walls of defence fall.
In His presence we can let go, breathe a sigh of relief, show our vulnerability, and accept His ability to be all we need.
We can say with assurance, “It is well with my soul.”, because the Good Shepherd is always at our side. He leads, protects, provides. He satisfies our hunger, quenches our thirst, collects our tears, heals our brokenness, and calls us out of hiding.
“Where are you?” We can respond, “Here I am”.
It is safe to come out of hiding because He is our Good Shepherd.