My fellow Shepherds, announcing, “Call me if you need me!” will not do.
Sheep do not call the shepherd, mostly they just wander off. It is up to the shepherd to call the sheep.
Being a shepherd is old-fashion work. Jesus knew that the technological age would come when he compared the timeless trade of shepherding to being a minister/pastor.
Nothing has changed since David wrote Psalm 23 and Jesus said,
“I am the good shepherd.” At the end of the day, being a shepherd is about touching your sheep, going after them, prodding, pleading, pushing, and doing whatever it takes to lead them to safety, shelter, and substance.
Remember, hanging out with other shepherds may be fun and full-filling (and is productive to a point), but God called you to watch over his sheep. Eventually, you have to break up the shepherd meeting and go over there where your sheep are.
And beware of allowing shepherd “stuff” to keep you away from your sheep.
Sermon preparation, prayer, working on your vision and ministry plan, community service, administration, and leadership duties are all good, but eventually, to be a good shepherd, you still have to actually get up and go out and touch and speak to your sheep.
Bottom line, more often than not, the correct thing to do is not to say, “Call me if you need me!” but to actually call on your people because they do indeed need you. They need to hear your voice and experience your touch.
So beware of becoming so busy working for the people that you fail to keep persons in your life each day.
The ONE THING for today: “Pastoral care,” while not considered sexy and progressive today, is still at the core of what it means to be a good shepherd.
John 10:14 (NKJV) I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own.