The Good Shepherd doesn’t protect His flock by keeping them from trials but rather providing His presence amid trials.
At times a shepherd will have to lead his sheep through some valleys.
According to Phillip Keller, a former Shepherd, and author, The valleys tend to have the best sources of water and provide the best feeding spots that lead to growth on the way to higher ground.
As Christians, we want a deeper walk with God but aren’t willing to endure the trials. The valleys of life give a greater understanding of our Good Shepherd’s presence and His protection.
A sheep under a shepherd’s care had many dangers in David’s day. Poisonous plants were one of the greatest. They also had irritations like flies and bugs. Insects would swarm around their nostrils and ears or open wounds. To protect the sheep, the shepherd would pour oil on them.
As Christians, we face dangers and irritants as well.
What does our Good Shepherd give us to navigate the dangers and fight off the irritants?
He gives us Himself.
The Holy Spirit indwells us and works in us: love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, meekness, temperance, and faith. He has also given us the Bible to serve as a guide and source of comfort.
Whether a conflict, irritation, or fearful valley, contentment comes when we walk with our Good Shepherd daily.
- What are some fears you are facing right now?
- What traits about God would help those fears?
- How are you responding to life’s irritating “flies?”
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