Sheep_Crop

Are You Ready to Follow?

by Joanna Pierce on July 13, 2016

Growing up, our family had a dog that eyed the front door, waiting for the precise moment to escape. We were able to keep her inside of the house most of the time, but there were a few instances she managed to squeeze through the small crack in the door or sneak around someone’s legs.

Once she had achieved victory, our dog would run about the yard, driveway, and contemplate entering the street. No amount of calling her name, or commanding her to return persuaded her otherwise. It was almost as if the sound of our voices spurred her to run farther and faster.

Our cat was the complete opposite. An unusual breed of his own, he would stay close to the family members. If after coming home, we didn’t know where he was, all we would have to do was call his name and he would come running or peer out from his hidden sanctuary.

My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me (John 10:27, KJV).

Sheep, though skittish creatures, can be calm and collected when they hear the soothing voice of their master. The shepherd has tended to them—provided protection, food, and shelter—and because of his presence in their life, they know his voice and follow him.

Jesus likens Himself to a Shepherd and His believers as sheep. If we have a relationship with the Lord, we will know what His voice sounds like. And, just as animals should hearken unto the voice of its master, we should listen and follow the voice of our Savior.

Our dog, to give her a bit of credit, was just a dog. She most likely did not have the mental capacity to understand there was a family actually taking care of her—feeding her, walking her, brushing her, playing with her, and more of the like. But, I know she knew our voices. Being around one family a majority of her life, and having the ability to identify common smells and sounds, all played into her recognition of who we were and our voices.

But, she ran just the same. She knew us, she knew our voices, but she didn’t follow.

Can we stop to take a moment to think about if we know the voice of our Master? Have we decided to turn the opposite direction at His voice, avoiding intimacy and closeness with Him? Have we disobeyed His voice because we like our own agenda and ways more than His?

Or, when He speaks, do we come running? Are we obedient to His voice and follow after Him?

Heaven help us if we are so far away from God we don’t even recognize His voice. Or, even worse, He’s stopped speaking to us. Are we even one of His sheep?

Let’s pray today that we can identify more with the creatures with an obedient heart, those who know the sound of their master’s voice. I want to hear my Lord and Savior calling, and I want to follow Him wherever He goes. Are you ready to follow?