Led By the Shepherd


Led By the Shepherd

What should I do? Should I live here or move there? Should I continue with my education? What career path should I follow? Is this really the person I should marry? What church should I attend? What is right? How does God want me to live and what does He want me to do? What is the best way to react in this situation? I do not know how I should respond to this challenge in my life. I am overwhelmed with confusion.

Life can be full of questions, confusion, and many decisions that need to be made. Some decisions are very weighty and will have far-reaching consequences; others even change the very trajectory of your life. The wonderful news is that you don’t have to face these challenges by yourself or in your own wisdom. God is interested in your life and He has a unique plan for you. God is primarily concerned about your spiritual well-being, but He is also interested in everything that touches your life.

Many people are trusting in their own wisdom, knowledge, intuition, or feelings to direct them in their decision making. The preponderance of evidence, based on the outcomes of people’s lives around us, clearly supports the scripture in Jeremiah 10:23, “O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.” Humans were not created to live without the guidance of their creator. Man’s devices and ways will lead to poor decision making and disastrous consequences.  “There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death” (Proverbs 16:25). There is a savior and friend who has all knowledge, understanding, and power and desires to journey with you through this life. If you will allow Him, He will not only lead you to Heaven, but He will guide you and direct you in those life-altering, major decisions that you face. God has your best interest at heart and will lead you successfully through the maze and challenges of life.

While there are many uncertainties which can cause stress and worry, God does not want you to walk in darkness or in the obscurity of confusion. He is the Good Shepherd who leads beside still waters. He wants to be that caregiver, friend, and most of all, Savior, who walks with you through the valley of the shadow of death.

The tenth chapter of John speaks of Jesus Christ as the Good Shepherd. “The sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out.  And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers” (v3-5).

Jesus knows your name, and He sees the decisions and choices that are before you. The voice of Jesus will penetrate emotions and feelings and give guidance and comfort. Jesus will go before you, making the path clear, but will you follow? God’s children know the voice of the Shepherd and will follow Him, fleeing from all other voices and ways. When people give heed to the voice of the stranger, they will find themselves getting farther and farther away from Christ, holiness, and God’s Word.

There are times when it seems God is not leading, but if you will wait and listen, the comforting voice of the Shepherd will speak again and direct you in the paths of righteousness. We need not and must not set our own course, for we will err. If we follow Christ and His way, we will come to an expected end of peace and victory.

If you will seek the will of God above your own desires and purposes, He will reveal to you in the right time that which you need to know. In His faithfulness, God has given to mankind all the gifts, tools, and necessary things by which we can know His perfect will for our lives. We will make mistakes even in our pursuit of God’s will, but as we grow in the Lord and learn of Him, we will understand His voice and way more clearly.

The Lord will lead His children. He will guide us spiritually and help us to know how to live a life pleasing to the Father. In major decisions we can be led by the Shepherd. Let us not get in front of Him or make decisions on our time frame, but let us follow Him carefully and sincerely.

It is a great comfort to rest in God during times of ambiguity, conflicting thoughts, and emotions. God, by His Word, through His Holy Spirit, will lead us with wisdom, understanding, and compassion. Let us wait on the Lord and be led by the Shepherd. ■