Ezekiel: A Message of Hope

Devotions from the prophet Ezekiel written to mobilize prayer for Europe

Needing a Shepherd - Ezekiel 34: 11-16

I myself will search for my sheep and look after them. (v. 11)

In the villages of southern Germany, shepherds still tend their flocks. One crisp fall morning, a lamb was born as I watched from the kitchen window. It quickly stood on wobbly legs, nursing eagerly from its mother. Later that morning the shepherd was moving the sheep to another pasture. As he headed off, the sheep obediently followed, except the mother whose little lamb was still too weak for the journey. She dashed after the shepherd, then looking back at her lamb, bolted back to it. Increasingly distressed, she seemed to know she was unable to do what was needed to both care for her babe, and follow the shepherd. My anxiety grew as well. Did he not see her distress? Would he carry on oblivious to her need?

Settling the flock in their new pasture, he turned back to the abandoned ewe and her lamb. Leaving his dog to watch the others, he returned. Lifting the little lamb to his shoulders, he led the mother to the rest of the flock. How often have I thought God was oblivious to my need? How many times have I questioned what he is doing?

God affirms that He is our Good Shepherd, binding up the injured, strengthening the weak, going after the one who has lost his way, carrying the lambs in his arms. He will never abandon us.

Prayer:  Lord, remind me when I doubt your care that you have promised you will never abandon me, that you always have your best in mind for me, and are working out your purposes in my life even when I can't see it.