Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Black Sheep of the Family (10/03/13)
TITLE: The Shepherd's Flock
By Cynthia G. Peoples
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When you hear anyone called “the black sheep of the family” what do you think of? Is it someone that’s addicted to drugs or alcohol? …or maybe sexual immorality….or laziness….or habitual lying….or gossiping….the list could go on and on. But what it amounts to is SIN. And all of us have fallen short of the glory of God.
It is us as human beings that deem one sin worse than another. But in God’s eyes anything that is not of faith is sin. And the problem is the constant struggle between the flesh and the spirit. The spirit is usually willing but the flesh is weak.
I grew up most of my life filling like “the black sheep of my family” simply because I was the one that was different and set apart, isolated and never seem to fit in anywhere. I never could figure out why I wasn’t loved, or wanted, or treated like my siblings even though I was the one labeled the “good one”!
I carried around so much pain, hurt, anger, and resentment for so many years as I struggled to be the peacemaker; always strong and independent; and I didn’t need anything or anybody else in my life. I didn’t know how to love or be loved and asking for help was impossible. So it was hard for me to call out to God and let Him teach me how to love and be loved.
Finally at the age of 31, on August 6th, 1989, I was down on my knees in the middle of my living room floor with my bible opened on my lap. I had just read the story about the woman caught in the act of adultery, and I cried out to God to please help me understand why my life was in such a mess, and to show me the way. I will never forget that day for the rest of my life! I literally felt Jesus reach down from heaven and pat me on the head like we might a little child, (or in my case, a shaggy old dog!). I audibly heard Jesus say, “It’s okay my precious child, I understand, your sins are forgiven…. now go and sin no more!”
For many years I still didn’t know how to let go and let God mold me and make me into what He created me to be. But now God has taught me that because of Adam and Eve’s disobedience in the very beginning we were all born as “black sheep”. But once we accept His gift of grace and salvation, He then takes us into His fold and becomes our shepherd. and we become one of many in His flock!
And just as a shepherd tends to and cares for His sheep, Jesus loves us, cares for us, and provides for us like no other human being could ever do. So if you’ve been labeled the “black sheep” in your family or you just feel that way about yourself, please accept God’s gift of forgiveness, mercy, compassion, and unfailing love and let Him wrap His arms around you and bring you into His flock! For today is the day of salvation!
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