Darkness crept in like a thief. Too late. Now they didn’t know how to get home. A staccato of fear pounded in their hearts as they huddled together. Exposed. To whatever and whoever may want to harm them.
We once raised sheep, and one night they didn’t return to our lighted yard. They never did this, so I walked out to the front fence line of our pasture. There they were like one dark blot moving together about halfway back. “Baaaaahhhh!”
“Here sheep! Here sheep! Here sheep!” I called. They calmed down and began to move in my direction. When I stopped calling, they stopped, so I kept calling until they found the lighted pathway back to home.
Isn’t that just like us? When things go well in our lives, we get so used to it. We become so accustomed to God’s light that we assume it will always be there. We grow passive and negligent. We don’t even notice the lengthening shadows. Then suddenly we are surrounded with darkness and we can’t find our way back to safety. We try to pull up the storehouse of God’s Promises we hold in our hearts, but we can’t focus. The darkness deprives us of discernment, despondency deadens us, and dread debilitates us. Which way is home?
The sheep still cried, and we, too, can cry. Their protector heard them, and our Protector will always hear us. He hears the weakest cry and can see through the thickest darkness.
When the sheep heard my voice, they recognized me as one who cared. They couldn’t see me, but they trusted I would lead them to safety. Do we know Jesus’ voice? Would we trust Him to guide us home?
The sheep got confused when they couldn’t hear my voice above their noise, so they sometimes had to be quiet. Likewise, when we’re crying out of the pain of darkness, we may have to tune in our ears to our Master’s voice. Do you hear it? Jesus stretches forth His scarred hands and pleads, “Come, come, come… Come, my sheep. Come unto Me, all you Who are weary. I will give you rest. Come to Me, you who are in darkness. I will give you light. In Me is safety. I am your HOME.”
Where are our hearts? Do we feel the most at home when we sit at Jesus’ feet? Or have we become too comfortable with pleasures in life that we don’t see the lengthening shadows? Time to head HOME!