by Dr. Brad Black
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The other day I was in the car listening to some preaching, I heard a wonderful illustration, and I have to share it with you.
There is a Shepherd and he brings his flock to a babbling brook. As some of you that have been with me for a long time and read my series of blogs on the good Shepherd, remember sheep are dumb and are very scared of noise. That is why in the 23 Psalm God says he will lead them by the still waters. A sheep will not drink out of or cross a babbling brook; a sheep will drink out of a muddy hoof print rather than going near good clean water in a babbling brook. The Shepherd knowing this finds a suckling lamb of a leading sheep. He picks it up, lays it on his shoulders, and carries it across the babbling brook. Well before you know, it the momma sheep was crossing over the babbling brook. Then here comes daddy sheep. Then slowly all the other sheep follow the leader sheep across the babbling book.
One of the hardest things in Christianity is why God allows bad things to happen to His good people. Most people question why, if God is all knowing and all-powerful, why He allows or even causes these things to happen. The only true answer is we must trust God because He is good, that He is doing what is best for us. I also believe with time you can possibly see some of the reasons why God does what he does.
For example, in 1969, I was a young boy, and my mom had a baby, Belinda and she only lived a few hours. This was very devastating to our little family. I only remember my Daddy crying two times in my life and that was one of them. I remember it being a very hard time because I did not understand and if I tried to ask questions, it made my mother cry. (Which I am sure my mother is doing right now. Sorry mom, please finish the article.) Now, fourty years later, I think I have a glimpse of some of the Godís reasoning.
First, my sister also had her first child die at birth. My sister was in Tenn. at the time and my parents were here in Houston at the time but they packed up and were there for my sister and because they had lost a child too, they were able to help my sister in a very special way, because they had been thru it. Then our youngest son was born prematurely, and his lungs were not fully developed, just like Belinda. My parents came thru then too. They helped with our other children and they were there for us in more ways than I can count. Because of my patents experience they we able to help there children live there the same thing.
Then there is the above-mentioned illustration. I had never really seen it before until I heard the illustration. You see, the preacher was using that illustration to show why Jesus will take a small child some times. You see the Shepherd is Jesus, and the small lamb is a small child. Jesus takes the small lamb to lead the whole flock to him. This is what also happened in my parentsí case. The loss of Belinda caused my patents to move closer to Jesus. As in the illustration, my mother moved first, I will have to admit she was one of the biggest influences in my early Christian life. Then my father, and just like the illustration of the sheep, I am sure that there was a lot of influence from my mother. Now over forty years later, most of you do not know this, but my mother is taking seminary courses. She is the co leader of her churchís womenís Bible study and teaches all the time. My parents also hold a Bible study group in their house every Thursday that my dad helps to teach. My dad also helps teach his Sunday school class. You see, now over forty years later, they are working on the flock, just like the illustration shows. Just like Paul says
King James Version (KJV)
28And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
I now have a small glimpse of what Godís plan was.
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