Being Part of The Herd (Guess Blogger)

Hi, my name is Laurie, sometimes I go by the nick-name Lulu. I am a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ and proud of it, yup, I am a Jesus girl. I am married to my first husband, Richard. Richard is an amazing man and father and has been putting up with me since we tied the knot in 1994. We have two amazing boys that are wonderfully amazing young men that have been a pure joy to raise thus far. We also have two fur babies. Ike is a handsome Chawiener (half long hair chiwawa and half wiener dog) and Stella is the sweetest cat I have ever had, she loves kisses and snuggles under the covers with us. I live in the Mid-West where I enjoy 3 of the 4 seasons, I could really be fine with skipping summer. In my spare time I am a writer, reader, quilter, student and employee. Thank you so much for visiting my blog, please leave me comments, my love language is Words of Affirmation and I am not ashamed to beg! Welcome Laurie

Being Part of the Herd

“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 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 forever.” Psalm 23 (KJV)
I grew up learning, memorizing and reciting this Psalm. If I had to guess, this is probably one of the most memorized passage in the Bible.
As we continue in our “Little Golden Book” series, I thought it would be fun to take a closer look at Psalm 23, and if you have not memorized it yet, I challenge you to do so.

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As a child I remember this Psalm bringing me so much comfort and a feeling of God’s protection over me. I would recite it anytime I was anxious or worried about things. I would dream of walking beside Jesus in a meadow of flowers and resting near a pretty stream. I could imagine Him catching me when I fell, and I could feel His presence with me as I would pray this Psalm.
I never once thought about what it would cost me to be one of His sheep or what it meant to be part of the herd. These thoughts didn’t occur to me until I was an adult.
So, what does it mean to be part of His herd? Why does God repeatedly refer to us as His sheep? Let’s start by looking at what it means to be one of His sheep and why we need Him as our Shepherd:

First, sheep are conformists. They enjoy being in a herd. They find protection in numbers. Sheep are good this way, but people often are not. (Nathan Tabor)
So let’s learn a little more about sheep and how we may be like them. Like sheep, we are a bit dense. While researching sheep I found a story about a sheep that fell off a cliff and the other 400 sheep in the herd followed him to their death. We tend to follow the herd people! Think about it and I bet you can find at least a dozen examples in your life where you followed the herd. We need a shepherd!
Sheep are defenseless. They cannot fend for themselves and they cannot fight off the attacks of other animals. They are the wooly snack food of the wild. Ok, I know what you are thinking right now….YOU are not defenseless. Hmmmm….are you sure? Can you really handle ANYTHING that comes your way?

“Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” 1 Peter 5:8
But the most dangerous thing sheep do is wander. And they tend to wander off for no good reason. They can have everything they need right where they are but they still wander off.
We as a human race are prone to wander too. The bible is full of examples of people, cities and nations who wander away from God. It has been that way since the beginning, Adam and Eve wander over to the tree of Knowledge. The whole human race wandered so far from God that a flood came and took over the earth.
You see, we are prone to wander in our faith and that is the greatest tragedy we could suffer. I am so thankful that I have a good shepherd who will leave the 99 and rescue me!

“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? Luke 15:4
I think that it is obvious that we are in desperate need of a Shepherd, someone who will watch over us and protect us from ourselves. Someone who spends all of his time with us, His sheep. Someone whose voice we will be able to discern above all other voices.

“My sheep listen to My voice; I know them, and they follow Me. I give them eternal life and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of My hand.” John 10:27
So what does it mean to be part of the herd? It means life, it means freedom from death, it means assurance that we are loved and looked after. It means experiencing goodness and mercy all the days of our life and finally, it means that we will dwell in the house of the Lets end our time now by praying through Psalm 23:
Lord our shepherd, you leave me wanting for nothing. I walk with you through green pastures and lie with you by the still waters. You restore my soul and lead me in the path of righteousness. Your protection is with me as I walk through the valley of death, I fear no evil. Your rod and your staff they comfort me. When the enemy attacks, you prepare a table before me and anoint my head with oil. My cup is running over with your goodness and mercy and I delight in you as I dwell in your house forever. Amen

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Little Christmas or Three Kings Day

Matthew 2.pngAfter Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east to Jerusalem and asked “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews?” We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him. When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Messiah was to be born. In Bethlehem in Judea, they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written. “But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judea; for out of you will come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel. Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. A soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.” After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. On coming to the house, they saw the child and his mother Mary, and they worshipped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another way.        Matthew 2:1-12

Today is known as Little Christmas and some Christians also called this day   “Three Kings Day”, since is known that Christmas season last for twelve days beginning on December 25 and ending on January 6.

The magi began their search in unbiblical ways, following messages hidden in an alien faith and wisdom. But their search led them to the God of the Bible. There is a lesson here for us. These Gentiles followed the star, building on the own motions of what it meant. They may have been following their own wisdom, but it was God who put eh star in the sky to attract them. They were Gentiles and they were among the first to recognize the birth of the Messiah. Already, in the birth of Jesus, Matthew sees the dividing walls between us and them, breaking down. What about the star? Was it a supernova? a comet?  We do not know. But identifying the star would not change the faith which Matthew is writing. The star is important, he says, because it is God’s gracious gift. The dream is also about God’s grace. “Going home by another way” has been represented as a language of conversion ad changed lives, and it could mean that. It could also mean simply “to take a different road when you go home.” God is revealed not only in the special revelation of Scripture but in our natural world as well.

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

God’s Love

Psalm 62.pngTruly my soul finds rest in God; my salvation comes from him. Truly he is my rock ad my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.                    Psalm 62:1-2

God’s love for his children is never changing, he is the same as yesterday, today, and all of our tomorrows. Praise His Name that he doesn’t not change like we as humans can, sometimes we change daily. I have read one of Sarah Young book called Jesus lives, it is a daily devotions that all can benefit from. We find comfort in knowing God. He is perfectly good and infinitely strong. If God were good but lacking in strength, we would not have any stronghold in times of trouble. If God were strong but not totally good, his massive strength could be terrifying. In fact, God’s power is threatening to those who oppose. However, He is the Good Shepherd, Jesus knows his sheep and his sheep knows him. Sheep have nothing to fear from a shepherd who is good. On the contrary, they feel safe in his protective presence. So it with him, we can feel safe and secure in his sheltering presence. The best way to avail yourself of his protection is to trust Jesus wholeheartedly. His unfailing love surrounds all those who trust in him. So your most important task as a sheep in his pasture is to keep on trusting him-the perfect Shepherd of our soul. Find rest in Jesus alone, for he is a surrounding stronghold of unfailing love. Sarah Young shares these words with you and me, and devotions book as well as reading scriptures daily continues our walk with the Master the “Great I Am”, and I encourage all to listen for our Shepherd’s voice as he guides our every step in our journey.

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

The Lighting of the Christ Candle

Christ Candle.pngTonight which is Christmas Eve we light the center candle which is the Christ Candle. Over the last four weeks as we have journey together through the advent season we have lite the candles of Hope which reminds us that Christ is coming to fulfill God’s promise. The candle of Peace and through Christ we found Peace. The third week was the candle of Joy which reminds us when the Angel’s told the Shepherd the good news of the birth of the Christ child lying in a manger this morning we lite the fourth candle which is the candle of love, as we remember from the Gospel of John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he sent his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.                                                                                                                               When we look beyond the ornately-adorned Christmas trees and beneath the countless layers of wrapping paper, we are reminded of the true reason we celebrate this time of year. We are reminded of the birth of a promise — a promise that offers to heal the past and light the way for the future and a promise that offers purpose for living. We are reminded of the birth of a Savior who promises eternal hope, joy, peace and good news to the world.

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

 

I AM THE GATE

I Am The Gate.pngTherefore Jesus said again, Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. I am the gate whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.                          ( John 10:7-10 NIV)

Sheep are defenseless animals, they are prone to go astray from their shepherd, they have poor eyesight, sheep tend to follow other sheep without thinking, and you know something, sheep’s are stubborn. You know something sheep’s sound a lot like us humans. Without the Good Shepherd (Jesus) we do go astray thinking we know better. Too many times in our own lives we do the strangest things without even taking the time to think it thru. For whatever reason we think that we would enjoy following others, such as Hollywood, musicians, false prophets yes even in todays world. We believe if we work and become a workaholic that too will satisfy because we have money. That is not true at all, you and I are created in God’s imagine and what we desire only God can give to us. You and I seem to get lost in the journey with God. We find ourselves a little discourage or distracted at times, so we stop going to church and even staying in God’s word, and being connected to other believes so we all little sheep that has gone astray. The enemy which is SATAN knows how to isolate us, he can intimidate us, he is a master out all the lies we can ever imagine, and thru it all he tries to keep us from God and serving him. Satan is the thief and he will still from us whatever he can, our families, home, our jobs, health and so much more, he can steal our very soul. In James 4:8 says, “Come near to God and he will come near to you, God is always there. He’d passed past my resistance. He crossed the borders of my trust issues. He climbed the hills of my heartbreaks. He come to bring me back. He came to remind me I can’t do life alone, I need him. He cares for you and he cares for me.

 

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

The Lord is My Shepherd

Psalm 23The book of Psalm is a book of poetry which is filled with prayers and songs that express the full range of human emotion. The psalms represent personal journals of the writers’ relationship with God. The thoughts and feelings they express help their readers draw near to the Lord as well. Some of the psalm were used in public worship services.  This chapter in which I am about to share with you was written by King David.

The Lord is my Shepherd——THATS RELATIONSHIP!

I shall not want————-THATS SUPPLY!

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures——–THATS REST!

He leadeth me besides still waters————THATS REFRESHMENT!

He leadeth me in the paths of righteous———–THATS GUIDANCE!

For His name-sake———-THATS PURPOSE!

Yea, through I walk through the valley of the shadow of death—–THATS TESTING!

I will fear no evil————THATS PROTECTION

For thou art with me————THATS FAITHFULNESS!

Thy rod and staff they comfort me——-THATS DISCIPLINE!

Thou prepares a table before me in the presence of mine enemies—THATS HOPE!

Thou anointest my head with oil—–THATS CONSECRATION!

My cup runneth over—-THATS ABUDANCE

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life—THATS BLESSINGS!

And I wo;; dwell in the house of the Lord—-THAT’S SECURITY!

Forever—-THATS ETERNITY!

This version of Psalm 23 was written by an unknown author that I came across around fourteen years ago, and I thought some of you would enjoy reading this.

 

Grace and Peace to You My Friends