I AM: the Good Shepherd

Have you ever bargained with God? You know the spiel— “God, please, if You just heal my child I’ll do ANYTHING. I swear. I’ll move to Africa. I’ll forgive my mom. I’ll forgive my husband! I’ll even still tell people about You, the one who gave me a child who’s sick all the time!”

Sound familiar? I think we’ve all been there.

Did you know that Jesus even did a little bargaining with God of His own?

On this particular Thursday night after dinner, Jesus and His disciples left the upper room and walked to the Garden of Gethsemane. It was late. The disciples were full from their Last Supper together. Soon they were sleeping while Jesus had gone to pray.

No one will ever know the agony-filled moments Jesus spent praying. He had full knowledge of His torturous death that was ahead. He knew He did not deserve to be murdered. He ached over the approaching separation from His Father.

But there was no escape for the One who came to do His Father’s will.

And so, while He made His request to God that the “cup” pass from Him—that God find some other way to rescue His people, He finished His prayer with surrender, “Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done” (Luke 22:42). No more bargaining; He was ready to become “the Lamb that was slain” before the foundation of the world (Revelation 13:8).

Just weeks earlier, Jesus declared, “I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me” (John 10:14). He knew that His followers understood what cruel shepherds were like. So He added, “I lay down my life for the sheep” (John 10:15). He had foretold the crucifixion now come.

The way to Easter, to resurrection, to victory, comes by following the example of Jesus, our Good Shepherd, in surrender to the will of the Father. We may not want to follow Him to the place of surrender, but we will never experience the power of God in our lives any other way.

So today ponder surrender. Ask yourself if your heart is completely His. No bargaining. No, “I’ll do this for you God, if You do this for me.” No negotiating with the eternal King of kings.

Don’t tune out the Spirit speaking. Don’t ignore the somber tone of today. Embrace the call of God to follow Jesus into the Garden and, there, bow before Him to do His will.

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6 thoughts on “I AM: the Good Shepherd”

  1. Dear Lord Jesus, please teach my rebellious heart the humility and trust I need to surrender to God. I want to surrender to You, God, and to live in obedience and trust in Your will every moment. Please help me, Lord Jesus.

    Thank you for Your amazing love and sacrifice for me and for all people! Please crucify my flesh, help me to take up my cross, and follow You in surrender and joyful obedience to God.

    Father God, Lord Jesus Christ, Holy Spirit, Almighty Triune God, You alone are God, Creator, Judge, Redeemer, Father, Provider, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Healer, Mighty to Save, Savior, Alpha and Omega, Shepherd, Comforter, Victorius Warrior, The Great I AM!!! I praise You alone, Lord God! Lord God, You have demonstrated Your Love for me and for all people through all of history and as written in the Holy Bible, Your Word. Thank You for loving us Lord God, thank You Lord God for loving me!

    I surrender to You alone, Almighty Triune God! Please forgive all of my sins, including​ my imagined self sufficiency, my pride, my selfish agendas, my greed, my bitterness, my unforgiveness, my worrying and fearing and “what ifs”, my greed, and every other sin. I am not my own. I belong to You alone, Father God, Lord Jesus Christ, Holy Spirit. Make me Your child, a willing vessel filled with You, Almighty Lord God, to be used only for Your purpose and Your glory, Lord God.

    Thank you Lord God for Your Love, Salvation, forgiveness, patience, and for pursuing me and all people in Your amazing Love and Mercy!!! I love You, Lord God!

    I pray not my will, but Your will alone be done, Lord God, in these and in all things.

    Thank You for loving us and for loving me! I love You, Lord God!

    In Jesus’ Name,
    Amen

  2. Thank you. This is the moment, this is the time of complete surrender. Spirits been waiting for me as I’ve been doing other things, but now is the time. Surrender. Complete surrender. No matter what it takes. Surrender

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