This morning the Lord woke me up with a word from Joh 11:7-8.
“Then after that saith he to his disciples, Let us go into Judaea again. His disciples say unto him, Master, the Jews of late sought to stone thee; and goest thou thither again?”
Jesus needs to raise Lazarus from the dead, but He would have to pass through the murderous Jews. Only few days before they had sought to stone him to death. He narrowly escaped death. Yet, once and again, he is going undeterred through the wolfpack because of one sheep that needs to be saved.
As pastors/shepherd, we feed the sheep, tend the sheep and lead the sheep. But our duty post is amongst the wolves (Matt 10:16). We’d go through the wolfpack sorting, seeking and saving the sheep. That’s what our call entails. They’d bark at you. They’d attack you. Some of such may be manifested through the very vessel you seek to save. Look beyond the insult, the betrayal, the denial, the connivance and all the manifestation of the enemy. Those works of the flesh manifested by that brother or that sister are the barking of the wolves. Deep down beyond those howls is a precious Lazarus–the precious soul for which Christ died and who is now embalmed with sin behind the stone wall of religion, doubt and unbelief . He’s precious to God.
Pastor, it is time to square your shoulder, and chin up. Dare the wolves, run the gauntlet, and save the perishing. “Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong [and] Let all your things be done with charity”. (1Co 16:13-14). If you remember that Jesus paid the ultimate prize for them, if you knew how precious they are before God, if you have respect unto the recompence of reward, you’d know it is worth all the efforts.
I really don’t think pastors should involve themselves with pity party. To be forewarned is to be fore armed. The good news is that you’re a sheep yourself. How’s that a good new for a sheep working in the midst of wolves, you may ask. It is good news because you’re a sheep of the Great Bishop of our souls (1Pet 2:25). He’s with you always saving you from all the works of the enemy. Nothing shall by any means hurt you. He’s working in you that which is well pleasing unto Him(Heb 13:21). “God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord” (1Cor 1:8). He’d confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus made us to understand that all you need to do is to walk in the light of day. Walking in love, led by the Word is walking in the Light. If you do you’d not stumble no matter the enemy’s efforts. If you ever find yourself stumbling over the huddle of self-pity, heartbreak, disappointment, malice, vendetta, or any work of the flesh; if you find yourself hating or cursing the sheep; if you find yourself quitting before time, if you find yourself burning out, there’s only one cause: there’s darkness in your heart and you’re walking in darkness. If you put on the Lord Jesus and make no provision for the flesh to gratify the lust thereof, no amount of satan’s effort can fell you. the devil doesn’t have the capacity to make you stumble neither do the wolves. All they do is to tempt the darkness in you. If you’ve not shed the light of love in any area of your life, that area would respond to the howl of the wolf and you’d find yourself grovelling at their feet.
Walk in love brother, look unto Jesus the author and the finisher of your faith. Be clad in meekness and refuse to loose focus. No matter what they throw at you, respond with the energies of love and prayer. In the process, stir the Spirit and your soul till you groan in yourself and groan in the Spirit. Eventually the dead shall hear your voice, son of God and he shall live. Amen