Beginning Again: Sheep
Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I fear no danger because you are with me.
Your rod and your staff— they protect me.
Psalm 23:4 CEB
If the Lord is our Shepherd, than we are the sheep.What fickle creatures we are too. In our fast food culture, as soon as something doesn't smell just right we pack up and find a new fold. I've done it. I've seen countless others do it too. This has created multiple problems for the modern church. First, it can displace the truly wounded within our fold. There are churches that refuse to heal, and we should never force the victim to worship with the wolf. Second, up and leaving a congregation doesn't really solve anything. The initial problem that led to the exodus still remains with the church. Third, there is a false sense of accomplishment within new church plants as growth comes from disenfranchised Christians, not new members to the Body of Christ.
Even with our wounded, wandering fickleness, we are invited to be part of the birth. It's part of the story. There is something perfect about the imperfect elements coming together in the nativity. Symbolically, one of these elements are us. We are invited too.
Where is your Shepherd? How do you remain in God's fold?
Dear Lord and Shepherd,
Protect us from the wolves. Keep us connect. Guide us to Jesus.