SHEPHERD - The Five Fold Ministry Of Ephesians Part 1

Image of a shepherd with his sheep

My father was a shepherd, if there is one thing that that I learnt about shepherding from him it is this: if you don’t care about your sheep, don’t be a shepherd.

I remember my father telling me stories of walking late at night into the fields to have to go dig the sheep out of snow drifts.

A shepherd cares about their sheep because each one represents equity. Each sheep represents an investment and each one lost represents a financial loss.

In the book of Ephesians there is a list of gifts (emphasis on the word ‘a’).

Much ink has been spilled, and many words spent in pursuit of this list: apostle, prophet, evangelist, teacher, pastor.

I've been around enough circuits to hear people say “I’m an apostle” or “I’m an evangelist”, but the one thing about this list is that all of them are embodied by Christ.

If we call ourselves disciples (those who follow Christ and seek to emulate his life message), then to some degree, we are called to embody all of these gifts as well.

Christ called himself “the good shepherd” (the word pastor means shepherd).

He is one who cares for all people.

And so in this way, as those who follow Christ, we are all shepherds; we are all those who care for the people around us, who want to help them in their sorrows and celebrate in their joys.

God is love, and we are called to love. People matter, people are important.

If a shepherd cares for his sheep for financial reasons, then how much more must we care for the people around us. A persons worth is not determined by a monetary value, but rather that person is priceless.

Let us never be clouded by anything but love.

Let us continue to recognise the divine in people, to continue to see the beauty around us in each living thing.

May we be those who follow Christ in His care for all people, may we be people that celebrate with those around us, and may we be those who break bread with all people, from all walks of life.
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