If you were starting your own sports team and needed a mascot you might consider choosing the lions, tigers, eagles, or bears as they give us a sense of power and independence. I seriously doubt that anyone would consider their mascot to be a sheep. Sheep are not known for their agility, strength or independence.
Yet God has chosen the “sheep” to be the mascot of his people. Not lions, tigers, eagles, or bears, but sheep. Why? Because as God’s people we bear a remarkable resemblance to sheep. Isaiah says it best.
Isaiah 53:6a All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way;
I have a cartoon that shows two sheep looking at a crowd of people and one of the sheep is saying, “All we like people have gone astray.” Unlike the bear, tiger or lion of strength we like sheep are inclined to be self-destructive. Our streak of wanting to be independent hurts us. Like a flock of sheep we need a shepherd. To live life without the Shepherd brings about our own demise.
We just wrapped up part two of our Amazing Grazing message yesterday.
Here is the outline.
PASTOR STEVE LUMMER
ARE YOU UP TO THE “REST TEST”?
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.– Ps 23:2,3 (kjv)
“And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High.” Daniel 7:25
GETTING A READ ON GOD’S LEAD
1. The Shepherd leads me to REST.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
REST is about the right SIGHTS and SOUNDS
Free from FEAR. – Free from FRICTION. – Free from FLYS.
2. The Shepherd leads me to REFRESHMENT.
he leadeth me beside the still waters.
3. The Shepherd leads me to RESTORATION.
He restoreth my soul
4. The Shepherd leads me to RIGHTEOUSNESS.
he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness
Or we can do life our way.
Psalm 23 – An Antithesis
The clock is my dictator, I shall not rest.
It makes me lie down only when exhausted.
It leads me into deep depression.
It hounds my soul.
It leads me in circles of frenzy, for activities sake.
Even though I run frantically from task to task, I will never get it all done,
For my ideal is with me.
Deadlines and my need for approval, they drive me.
They demand performance from me, beyond the limits of my schedule.
They anoint my head with migraines, My in-basket overflows.
Surely fatigue and time pressures shall follow me All the days of my life.
And I will dwell in the bonds of frustration Forever