I Just Want to be a Sheep

Over MLK Weekend, I was able to share an awesome experience with a great group of students and chaperones. I’ve been excited about being able to go snowboarding with the kids for quite a while (as my previous blogs may have shown…). I love being able to spend time with the students and other adults from the congregation OUTSIDE of the walls of the church. Being able to spend part of our daily life and adventures is one of the greatest joys of ministry, not just as a DCE, but as a brother in Christ. When we get to spend time together doing everyday things, our relationships are given the opportunity to grow, and we can share God’s love and show patience outside of the walls of the church.

During the 2022 Winter Retreat, I was riding up the Glenwood Caverns gondola and saw a family of big horn sheep, and the idea for this year’s theme was guaranteed. 

“I Just wanna be a sheep” was bound to be the theme. There are a lot of different verses and songs that refer to us as Jesus’ sheep. In John 10, He calls Himself the Good Shepherd, and points out the importance of the sheep knowing the shepherd and His voice. Jesus shares the dangers of those who are not the shepherd trying to steal, kill and destroy, and how He protects us. 

As we went up and down the mountain, the kids noticed how loud I was. Again, I’ve never been accused of being quiet, so it’s entertaining to me and them, (and surprising to the people on the mountain) how well my voice carries. Calling to the students at meal times, when it’s time to leave, or simply to get their attention, my voice is pretty noticeable. They know my voice, because they hear it a lot. 

In the same way, Jesus says in John 10:14-16: 

“I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. And I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd.”

We are already part of Jesus’ flock, but there are more who are outside of it that will be a part of it, by us sharing the good news of Jesus. We get to share Jesus’ voice about the forgiveness of sins that He offers us. We share about the hope that He gives us. Through this sharing, we can also remember the old lyric, 

I am Jesus’ little lamb,

Ever glad at heart I am; 

For my shepherd gently guides me,

Knows my need and well provides me,

Loves me every day the dame,

Even calls me by my name.

We are called by name; led, not pushed; cared for, and loved. What a good shepherd. I just want to be a sheep.

In Christ,

Josh Cromley, Director of NexGen Ministries

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