Words from Pastor Jim:
DON’T CALL ME A SHEEP!
Few of us would receive being called a sheep as a compliment. Most of our sheep images are usually of a fluffy, somewhat cuddly, but rather dull witted farm animal.
One sheep farmer who has spent a lifetime raising and caring for these animals said, “It seems that sheep wake up every morning looking for a new way to die.” Our sheep farmer’s experiences tell us that the sheep has a singular proclivity for getting itself into trouble, as in life threatening situations, no matter where they are.
Then we have the Bible. It’s inescapable that the Bible really wants us to identify with these creatures and embrace a sheep identity—especially when it comes to our relationship with God.
This biblical sheep metaphor really takes off with the story of David—the humble shepherd who would become the great king of Israel. From King David forward, Scripture is relentless in comparing and referring to God’s people as—usually hapless—sheep.
So, the Bible says we’re sheep, but our culture and society doesn’t really lift up this sheep image as the way to go. Cute, cuddly, gentle are nice, but where’s the drive for personal accomplishment and achievement that our society so highly values?
Where do all the great adventures and experiences that make for an exciting life fit into a sheep’s life?
Besides that, we use the same word whether we’re talking about one sheep or a hundred sheep. What’s up with that?
Maybe we should give the sheep farmer’s assessment of the sheep life a bit more thought before we completely cast aside that sheep identity the Bible pushes us so hard to accept.
Many of us wake up each morning on our quests for personal accomplishment and achievement or new adventures or experiences—even if only in our dreams.
Where will our quest, our drive, lead us—even if we’re “successful”? What happens if we’re not successful?
Of course, sheep aren’t really “looking for a new way to die.” And, neither are we.
But, are we looking for the right way to live? Are the things that we and society put so much value on really life giving?—or, life taking?
The answer to these questions may lie in looking at our life from the sheep’s perspective.
We’ll be doing just that beginning with our Fall Kickoff on September 8 in a new Sermon Series: No Sheep Left Behind.
Sheep, or not, no one wants to get left behind. So, don’t. I hope to see you on September 8!
Newsletter (PDF format): newsletter-September 2019
Monthly Calendar (PDF format) with Birthdays : September 19 Calendar