HH Sir Godfrey Gregg D.Div
Overwhelm With Appreciation and Love
Praise the Lord for another day and for all His goodness towards us in that we wake and once more have seen the light. Hallelujah. My brothers and sisters in the Lord peace be unto you in His fullness. Thanking God for you in all things and learning to appreciate you for who you are.
We know that the work of leaders and ministers often compared to that of shepherds. Shepherds lead, prod, take care of, watch out for, nurture, rescue and direct the sheep. As shepherds, we work directly for, and under, the Shepherd and Overseer of our souls (1 Pet. 2:25).
A shepherd’s work can be hazardous and gruelling. The powerful story of rescue and salvation in Luke 15, of leaving the 99 to find the one who is lost, motivates all men and women of God. But we must always remember to give thanks and appreciation to those who sacrificially give of their lives so that others might be saved.
“Pits” are an oft-used metaphor in the Bible. Salvation is often pictured, in both the Old and New Testaments, as a rescue from a pit. The region was filled with both natural and man-made pits, some of which were used as cisterns to capture rainwater.
Joseph was thrown into a pit by his jealous brothers. Daniel was placed in a pit with a den of lions. Jeremiah found himself in a cistern and narrowly escaped death in a muddy mire.
There are many present-day pits into which the people of God may fall. There are the pits of drunkenness and drug addiction. There are pits of unemployment, illness and disease. There are pits of immorality, of anger and hatred, of lying, deception and greed. There are pits of self-pity and victimhood. There are pits of depression, despair and discouragement.
Many of us have even described our condition, when we are asked how we are doing, as being “in the pits.”
God lifts us out of those pits. God saves us. Jesus walks among us, as our Shepherd, to lift us and carry us away from the pits into which we fall.
Leaders and ministers constantly find themselves ministering around the edges of pits, into which the people of God have fallen. We need to thank those who courageously and self-sacrificially give of themselves that we might be pointed to the One who can lift us out of the pit.
You may remember the words to a song that was popular many years ago:
Love lifts us up where we belong on a mountain high, where the eagles fly.
Love lifts us up where we belong, from the world we know, up where the clear wind blows.
When some say, “what’s all this love-stuff you are preaching?”, we should remember that it is God who first loved us. And his love should flow through us. We need to lavishly express our appreciation to those who express this love toward us, possible only because they know that Jesus has saved us as sons and daughters.