Finding Home in God’s Flock – Br. Todd Blackham

Br. Todd Blackham

Isaiah 40:1-11
Ps. 96
Mt. 18-12-14

If someone came up to you and called you a sheep, I would imagine you’d take it as an insult rather than a compliment.  In our day, referring to people as sheep or sheeple, is to call down a whole host of insulting imagery.  The idea of sheep following blindly, obedient to a fault, unable to think or act for themselves, is hardly suited to our society’s notions of informed decision making, questioning of authority, and devotion to personal autonomy.  But neither of these ways of being in their exaggerated forms are appropriate for the people of God.

It’s true that sheep are popularly considered rather stupid animals. Perhaps it’s not so much that they’re stupid but that they get so fixated on one thing that they need a bit of prodding to move them along.  Corporately, sheep will graze a pasture all the way down to the roots, destroying the very grass they depend on, and so the shepherd must constantly move the flock from one pasture to another in order to be able to return again when the grass is renewed.  Individually, a sheep may wander from the flock because of a tempting stream, or the promise of greener grass on the other side.  But alone, sheep are helpless against predators, liable to get tangled in the bushes they seem so attracted to, and even if they do manage to survive for a while, without shearing, their fleece will eventually weigh them down so much that it will almost certainly lead to disease and death. Read More