My friend was so excited about the new pastor at his church. He went on at length about his wonderful preaching. He asked me to go to the church’s website, and to the latest sermon posted there. I was eager to comply with the request and within hours had listened to two sermons.
I found the method of presentation a distraction to the content of the sermons. The young preacher shouted all the way through his message. I sensed anger in his voice and I wondered why he spoke in such an aggressive manner. I could not imagine how he could preach on love or give a message on the “gentle and humble” One he is seeking to serve while sounding so angry.
Our beloved Master is full of grace and gentleness. He is totally approachable. When you find yourself stumbling in your Christian journey it helps to recall the story of Peter’s sad failure. He had pledged to follow Jesus to the death but instead deserted his beloved Master within hours of such a powerful pledge of courage.
Jesus, knowing how broken Peter was after his denial of his Master, quietly arranged a private meeting with His devastated disciple. None of the detail of what transpired in that meeting is disclosed in Scripture. That fact demonstrates how gentle the Good Shepherd is with His people when they fall. Also, the message from the empty tomb is for the disciples “and Peter”. So the disciples all knew that Peter had a special invitation to join the Master in Galilee.
Do you see just how tender the Good Shepherd is with broken believers? Are you someone who needs such encouragement due to a fall? What more evidence do you need of the loving reception that awaits you? You need to run into His loving arms right now and pour out your confession. He waits for you so come and come now.
Perhaps you know a child of God who has fallen into some sin. You may be the one this gentle Teacher wants to use to invite the sinner to rise up and run to His open and strong arms where forgiveness and restoration awaits them. Go in the name of the Good Shepherd and tenderly draw the wounded sheep back to the safety of the Good Shepherd’s fold. Go, and go now.