By Campus Missionary Mary Rowley, based on Ezekiel 34:11-16, 20-24
There’s a very good reason that sheep need a shepherd. They can’t survive on their own; they need to be led, or they’ll panic. There’s also a very good reason that we are compared to sheep. We can’t survive on our own, either. If we don’t have a leader to guide us and show us where to go, we’ll panic. We cannot get through life without a leader. We are incapable of it.
It’s easy for us to put our faith in leaders we can see. Sometimes it’s a politician; sometimes a supervisor or boss. Sometimes it’s our parents or our spouses or our friends. In some cases it might even be our pastors or church leaders. But if those leaders aren’t pointing back to the true Leader, they are leading us down the wrong path, and they will abandon us in the end.
God promises to lead us, even when we have been ignoring him. He promises, “I myself will search for my sheep and will seek them out. … I will rescue them from all places where they have been scattered” (Ezekiel 34:11-12). Although we cannot see God, we can hear him through his Word, and we can follow his voice. He shows us where to go, and we can rest assured that where he’s leading us will be good in the end, even if it’s a difficult journey.
He says, “I will feed them with good pasture, and on the mountain heights of Israel shall be their grazing land. There they shall lie down in good grazing land, and on rich pasture they shall feed on the mountains of Israel. I myself will be the shepherd of my sheep, and I myself will make them lie down” (34:14-15). As we follow our Shepherd, Jesus the Son of God, he will lead us through the dark valleys into the blessed mountains. We can trust that he is leading us down the right path.