Monday, February 6, 2012

The Narrow Gate

Have you ever seen a sheep herding contest? I will never forget the first time I saw one, at the Fryeberg Fair in Maine. There were times when I had to laugh, while watching the sheep  ignoring the sheep dog, refusing to obey his lead. But what was amazing to me was, how patient the dog was, as he waited for the shepherd to whistle his next command. Then the dog would race across the field, nipping at the kneels of the sheep. Eventually, the sheep were herded one by one through a NARROW gate into a pen. Each contest lasted about ten minutes. The shepherd and his dog, who were the fastest to herd their sheep into the pen and close the gate won.

This event was one of the most fascinating to watch, especially the relationship between the shepherd and his sheep dog. It reminded me of one of the glories of our Lord Jesus as our Good Shepherd.  I saw it as an analogy. Jesus Christ is the Shepherd, we are the sheep and the Holy Spirit is the sheep dog, sent into the world to bring us back through the NARROW GATE to the Good Shepherd. The Holy Spirit is often called the "the hound of heaven" and I can see why.  He is determined to fulfill the glory of the Good Shepherd even if we go astray.  The Holy Spirit will come and get us back into line. Sheep have such a mind of their own. How appropriate it is for the Lord to call US His SHEEP. Working together, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit hems us in on all sides leading us through the NARROW GATE on our journey home.  If it was left up to us, we would never find the NARROW WAY. I am just thankful that we can rest in the peace of God, moment by moment knowing that Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit only does what they see the Father doing.  If God is for us, who shall be against us. Jesus Christ is our Good Shepherd and we SHALL NOT WANT of anything, because He is OUR everything and the Holy Spirit will make sure we know this truth..

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