Ear Blind: Listen to the Shepherd

ID 140912650 © Leoniek Van Der Vliet | Dreamstime.com

Febreze questions consumers, “Have you gone nose blind?” Oblivious to foul odors because you’ve simply gotten used to them?

I believe Christians suffer from ear blindness. John 10:2-5 NIV says: 

The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep . . .  the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them . . . his sheep follow him because they know his voice. But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.”

Too often, my sheepy self has NOT run away from a stranger’s voice but I’ve submissively followed him instead. I’ll use the Old Testament passage of David and Goliath to illustrate:

  • On hearing the Philistine’s words, Saul and all the Israelites were dismayed and terrified.” 1 Samuel 17:11
  • For forty days the Philistine came forward every morning and evening and took his stand.” 1 Samuel 17:16

Note the response of King Saul and the Israelite army to the stranger’s voice. Fear. Passivity. Tolerance. Forty days of trash talk with no rebuttal. 

  • “David asked . . . ‘Who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?’” 1 Samuel 17:26

Consider David’s response to the stranger’s voice. God-confidence. Action. Zero tolerance. 

David knew His God. 

David knew his enemy. 

David knew which voice to listen to and which voice to silence. 

A lie I’ve listened to for years concerns my personal worth. My birth resulted from an unplanned, unwanted, and unwed pregnancy—and I’ve carried that since childhood. I’ve struggled to find worth in good grades, good athletic performance, and good behavior. But I couldn’t be good all the time and when I wasn’t “good” I felt like a failure. This Goliath, this lying voice, this stranger’s shout has been my reality for over fifty years. 

But my Shepherd says otherwise. 

My name is Gayle. Gayle means “my father is joyful” or “my father rejoices.” 

And Scripture says He does—over me. 

“Unwanted” or “my Father rejoices”? Today, the choice seems easy, but it’s taken me years to distinguish between the voices and to believe the truth.

John 10:27-28 says, “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand.”

God will always speak truth. The stranger lies. 

What lie have you listened to? 

Silence your Goliath and listen to the quiet voice of your Shepherd, for He speaks life. 

Workout of the Week: Ear Blind

Memory Verse: “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand.” John 10:27-28

Meditation Passage: 1 Samuel 17; John 10

Do It: Silence your Goliath.