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Know that the LORD is God. It is He who made us, and we are His; we are His people, and the sheep of His pasture.
An unexpected phone text alerted me to a prayer meeting being held at my church. I hadn’t heard about it previously, but apparently these prayer meetings had started a couple of months before. The last line of the text is what gripped me: I believe it will be another milestone in the life of our church as we seek the face of God together.
Who could turn that down? After a hurried dinner, my husband, grown daughter and I headed off to church.
When we arrived, there were about a dozen or so people already seated. Our worship leader was quietly strumming his guitar, and people were chatting. I saw many people I knew, but there were a few faces I did not recognize. Others slipped in quietly and the number quickly doubled.
He led out His people like sheep and guided them like a flock in the wilderness. Psalm 78:52
We began with music, worshipping our Savior and Creator as we lifted our voices in praise, adoration and thankfulness. There wasn’t a choir, and no full worship team, but instead a guitarist and a vocalist – and it was perfect.
The leader then boldly stood before us and spoke about how the Lord speaks to His people today. He stated that the primary way the Lord speaks is through His Word, the Bible. But how does He speak when we are not reading our Bibles? Does He stop speaking? No, absolutely not. He speaks in a myriad of ways. The Holy Spirit speaks to us through our everyday life – through nature, through songs we hear, through things we see, through our emotions and through people, just to name a few – but He will never speak in ways that contradict the Bible.
He then asked us to turn in the Bible to John 10:1-10, and instructed us to pay attention to any particular verse stood out to us as he read. We were then to read the passage silently to ourselves, and ask the Lord to speak to us.
“Truly, truly I say to you, the one who does not enter by the door into the fold of the sheep, but climbs up some other way, he is a thief and a robber. But the one who enters by the door is a shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep listen to his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he puts all his own sheep outside, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice. However, a stranger they simply will not follow, but will flee from him, because they do not know the voice of strangers.” Jesus told them this figure of speech, but they did not understand what the things which He was saying to them meant. So Jesus said to them again, “Truly, truly I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All those who came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came so that they would have life, and have it abundantly.” John 10:1-10
For me, it was verse 3: To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name, and leads them out.
Immediately I remembered a time that I had spent with the Lord several years ago. I had been talking with Him when suddenly I saw a picture. In the picture, the Lord was holding my left hand, and was writing on my palm. He drew a heart, and then began writing something inside the heart. When He was finished, I looked at my hand and saw the word “MINE.”
But now, this is what the LORD says, He who is your Creator, Jacob, and He who formed you, Israel: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine!” Isaiah 43:1
Are you His sheep? Can you hear Him calling your name? He is calling, because His Word says that He desires for all to come to repentance. He loves you, and longs for you to follow Him. Call Him by His name, and He will hear you. Jesus. Yeshua. Start the conversation.
Then we Your people, the sheep of Your pasture, will thank You forever; from generation to generation we will declare Your praise. Psalm 79:13