The Pasture of His Perfect Will

 

“Yahweh is my Shepherd, I lack nothing.  In meadows of green grass, He lets me lie.  To the waters of repose He leads me; there He revives my soul. (Psalm 23:1-2)

“Tell Me.  Suppose a man has a hundred sheep and one of them strays; will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hillside and go in search of the stray?  I tell you solemnly if he finds it, it gives him more joy than do the ninety-nine that not stray at all.  Similarly, it is never the will of your Father in heaven that one of these little ones should be lost.” (Matthew 18:12-14)

“Now the elder son was out in the fields, and on his way back, as he drew near the house, he could hear music and dancing.  Calling one of the servants he asked what it was all about.  “Your brother has come” replied the servant “and your father has killed the calf we had fattened because he has got him back safe and sound.”  He was angry then and refused to  in, and his father came out to plead with him; but he answered his father, “Look, all these years I have slaved for you and never once disobeyed your orders, yet you never offered me so much as a kid for me to celebrate with my friends.  But, for this son of yours, when he comes back after swallowing up your property–he and his women–you kill the calf we had been fattening.”  The father said, “My son, you are with me always and all I have is yours.  But it was only right that we should celebrate and rejoice because your brother here was dead and has come to life; he was lost and is found.” (Luke 15:25-32)

**Scriptures taken from The Jerusalem Bible


I’ve often pondered on the stories of the ninety-nine sheep and the one lost sheep.  And also on the story of the prodigal son and the faithful son.  The great rejoicing over the lost ones returning from a life of sin.  What about the faithful sheep grazing in the pasture of the Father’s perfect will?  Are they chopped liver?  Not at all!  Faithfulness and obedience is greatly rewarded and greatly appreciated by God.

I think about my own life.  I met Jesus when I was nine years old and I fell in love with Him then.  But the cares of the world and the pride of life lured me away from the pasture of His perfect will.  For many years I was gone, and came back and was gone again.  Each time I wandered He was always FAITHFUL to come after me and lead me back to the pasture.  I know there was great rejoicing when I came back this last time.  And yes, He is using me to advance His kingdom.  I’m very faithful now.  Just like the prodigal son, I’m so grateful for His mercy that I am totally sold out now.

But if I could turn back time and do my life all over again, I would have never left the pasture of the faithful ones.  I wish I would have been obedient and faithful to Him from day one.  But He doesn’t want me to regret anything, so I will do anything to please Him.  Like the Bible says “to whom much is forgiven, they love much.”

Let’s look at the faithful sheep and the obedient elder son.  What are the rewards of their faithfulness?

The faithful and obedient don’t experience lack because their Shepherd is faithful to lead them to the best pastures and the best places to rest.  They are secure in Him.  Great is their peace day after day and year after year.

All of the resources of God’s kingdom are at their disposal.  At any time they can access the best that the Father has.  They are intimately known by Him–because they are always with Him.

They are given greater responsibilities because of their faithfulness.  They are trusted by God.  That is a wonderful place to be.  To know that God KNOWS He can depend on you.  What a blessing that is!

Our Father has the unique ability to love everybody equally.  Everyone is greatly loved.  Yes, He will move heaven and earth to reach a lost soul.  Yes, He will use the testimonies of the lost sheep and the prodigal sons to reach those still lost.  Yes, He will shower blessings on those who come back to Him.  But there is no greater reward to be had in the Kingdom of God than a faithful son or daughter.  The sheep who stay in the pasture of His perfect will all the days of their life have a rich reward!

I personally believe that when Jesus is giving out our rewards and crowns on that wonderful day at the Judgment seat of Christ, there is a crown of faithfulness that will be given to those who have never left His side.  To the faithful ninety-nine and to the obedient brothers and sisters, there is a special crown to lay at His feet.

Today, if you have been faithful and true since Jesus came into your heart.  You have the greatest testimony.  A testimony of faithfulness is a rare gem.  One that is highly valued by the Father.

Our God has the ability to make everyone feel special.  His grace is so great to us!  Don’t think for one second that your faithfulness is not noticed by Him.  It is and it is rewarded.  You only have to ask for what you need.  He is even more faithful than you.  If you are like me and have wandered and returned, His joy at your return is great!  Whether you are one of the ninety-nine or you are the one sheep He found, it’s time to stay in the pasture of His perfect will.  This is the place where the blessings are….

Don’t know Him?

Meet Jesus Here…

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