My Shepherd Knows Me – Week of April 26, 2021
“I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me – just as the Father knows me and I know the Father – and I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd.”
By this time in the school year, we may feel like we know our students pretty well. I know who loves the art center and who will pull out the blocks at play time. I know my right handers and left handers. I know who is struggling with letter recognition and who is already reading. But there’s so much about my students I don’t know. Even after a year together, children find ways to surprise me.
Jesus, our Good Shepherd, is never surprised. He knows us even better than we know ourselves. He knows what brings us joy and what makes us cry. And he knows our deepest darkest secrets. Every sin we have ever committed, Jesus knows about. That might distress us; we don’t want Jesus to know about our sinful thoughts, our careless words, and our selfish actions. The amazing thing is that Jesus loves us anyway. He did what no earthly shepherd would do for lowly sheep. He laid down his life for us so we may be with him forever.
Our Shepherd knows us, and we know the Shepherd. God gives us his Word in the Bible so that we may get to know Jesus. God’s Word points out our need for our Savior because of our sins. We read about God’s plan of sending his own son to take those sins away. We receive the wonderful promise of a home in heaven with our Good Shepherd.
Then God uses us to share this knowledge with others. We get to talk about Jesus with our students every day. We use God’s Word to teach and correct and train them. And our students share their faith and strengthen us as well. We know we are part of God’s flock.
King David wrote about our Good Shepherd with these familiar words, “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” (Psalm 23:1-3, 6)
Savior, like a shepherd lead us; much we need your tender care.
In your pleasant pastures feed us; for our use your folds prepare.
Blessed Jesus, blessed Jesus, you have bought us; yours we are.
Ever let us seek your favor; ever let us do your will.
Blessed Lord and only Savior, with your love our hope fulfill.
Blessed Jesus, blessed Jesus, you have loved us; love us still. Amen.
Let All the People Praise You, p. 262: 1, 3