Then Jesus told them, â€œThis very night you will all fall away on account of me, for it is written:
â€˜I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.â€™â€ Matthew 26:31 (NIV)
Jesus is quoting a prophecy from Zechariah which was aimed, not at disobedient shepherds as in Zechariah 11, but at the obedient shepherd. OBEDIENT shepherds, beginning with Jesus, will be STRUCK and his sheep will scatter. The word of the LORD in Zechariah says 2/3 will scatter and only 1/3 will be left. Not many pastors want to meditate on the passage! Maybe shepherds and sheep alike should give it some thought!
Does the Staff-Parish Relations Committee or Board of Deacons know where you stand in regards to your pastor and the vision he has been given for his â€˜flockâ€™? I am not going to deal with whether you know the vision itself. Thatâ€™s another day for the LORD to speak to us about that. I know that my pastorâ€™s vision for the church that I am a part is for outreach. Itâ€™s about evangelism and discipleship. I know that it is his desire that every activity and function in the church from worship to softball be about saving souls and growing up mature disciples. I am behind that 100%. I want our church to grow so much that I would miss meals in order to teach discipleship classes â€“ there would be a need for so many of them! I would have to stay up late to write Power Point presentations for teachers to use about gifts and missions and various ministries. And if this is NOT where I am and I am NOT on the same page with the church vision â€“ then I need to move on and find a church that doesnâ€™t want to grow! There are plenty of those who are â€˜satisfied with the way things areâ€™ and only want to â€˜do what weâ€™ve been doingâ€™. Thatâ€™s not me!
This third I will bring into the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, â€˜They are my people,â€™ and they will say, â€˜The LORD is our God.â€™â€
Zechariah 13:9 (NIV)
Will you be a part of the 1/3 that stays near the shepherd and says clearly, â€œI am part of the Godâ€™s vision for this church and I wonâ€™t be part of the silent majority that allows the loud, miniscule minority to shout as long as they likeâ€!
Peter said that he would stand by Jesus no matter what â€“ then he denied Him three times in the next 24 hours. Jesus didnâ€™t stop with Peterâ€™s denial. He saw his repentance and tears even as He hung on the cross. Jesus reinstated Peter by asking the all important question: â€œPeter, do you love me?â€ the same three times. Jesus asks me that today as I quickly say I will stand with Jesus and the vision He has given my pastor and then let the opportunity slip through my hands once again. What answer do I give when Jesus asks: â€œJody, do you love me?â€ Do I love my Jesus enough to STAND with him behind the line that He has drawn in the sand. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!!! ENOUGH SILENCE!! SPEAK!
This devotion goes out today as usual but with an added recipient. It is going to the committee chair at my church. I am at this church to serve and be obedient to â€œGO! And make disciples!â€ If that isnâ€™t where the church is going, then I will find a fellowship that is. This is where I stand.