The Good Shepherd is one of the most widely known images of Christ. It is in part because that is what Jesus called Himself. In fact He said that no one can replace Him in that role. Many have tried but, whether they recognize it or not, they have failed. (see John 10:1-14) He is the Shepherd of our souls; not just in the life to come but in this life; the here and now.
Christ is able and willing to shepherd us through life. Others may want to but are unable. Others may have good intentions but lack the foresight, wisdom and eternal perspective necessary.
It is precisely because Jesus is the Divine Son of God, as well as Human, that He is the Great Shepherd.
He possesses the ability to see beyond any mere human. He has eternal wisdom, foresight and perfect perspective. After all, He is the Alpha and Omega.
He possesses a perfect love like no other human. There is not one ounce of selfish motivation in Christ's love for us. He displayed His perfect love in His life and His death.
Just take a moment to ponder this truth. This Jesus is the Good Shepherd; our Good Shepherd. He has both the supernatural ability and unfathomable love that it takes to be the perfect Shepherd of our lives.
Psalm 23 captures this image in poetic beauty. It is arguably the best known portion of biblical scripture. It has been quoted at funerals to comfort and hospitals to encourage. It has been an inspiration to many millions over the centuries.
Take a few moments and give the 23rd Psalm a fresh look with the knowledge that Jesus is available to guide and provide in each and every one of life's steps.
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's 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 for ever (Psalms 23:1-6 KJV)
Question: How does knowing the Good Shepherd change the way you approach life? How can this knowledge give you comfort, compassion and confidence?