December 1

Isaiah 40:6-11

“He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep.” vs. 11

The prophet believed with all his heart that better days were ahead for his people in spite of their lack of constancy. He didn’t think that they would miraculously change and thereby win God’s favor. He knew they were like the grass and the flowers of the field, here one day and gone the next. No, his hope was based on the steadfast love of God, a love that would endure forever, and he had confidence that his loving God would come like a shepherd to tend the wandering flock that was Israel. That image continues to speak to us across the centuries even though most of us have had little personal contact with shepherds. But we’ve heard the stories and seen pictures of the Good Shepherd and have learned to associate them with the tender nurturing that comes from Jesus. We know that even though we’ve strayed and lost our ways, we’ve not been abandoned. And on the days when we want to pull the covers over our heads and stay in bed, we are safe in the arms of the Shepherd, and on our way to a more glorious future. There are many things to worry about in our troubled world–the one thing we don’t need to be anxious about is our relationship with God. That’s been secure from the beginning, and will continue so until the end!

Thought for the Day: What is life like in the Shepherd’s arms?

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