The Sheepdog’s Shepherd
Briefing: When a city or county puts a face to their local law enforcement they usually picture the Police Chief or Sheriff. As subordinates of these law enforcement leaders, we too look to them as the face of our department or agency but we also tend to have a more intimate relationship with them.
Dispatch (Assignment): Read Psalm 23.
On the Street: The LORD is my shepherd. He is the shepherd to all the sheep and the sheepdogs but I love to underline the word MY. This is a personal relationship I have with my LORD. I am His sheepdog, I follow His directions and protect His flock. There may be sheep in the flock that hate me and call me names but they are still His sheep and it is my duty to protect all of His sheep.
The sheep may not understand the sheepdogs or what their job is but the Shepherd does. The Good Shepherd gives me peace. Verse 2 says, “He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters.” Peace and safety are provided to the sheep and the sheepdog. Have you given any thought to the fact that God is proud of you for your service?
“He restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.” Law enforcement officers are called to live a life of righteousness. We are called to be set apart from society by our actions and conduct. That is part of what makes us sheepdogs. Sheepdogs are different from sheep mainly because of their actions and conduct. Let the Good Shepherd lead you down paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. For His name’s sake is not just the job, it is living a life dedicated to the master of the sheepdog. If it was just a job anyone could do it but it is more than that. It is a calling from the Shepherd. Follow Him.
Listen to verse 4, you sheepdogs, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” I have confidence in my ability to carry out my duties but it is my absolute confidence in the Shepherd that allows me to walk through the valley of the shadow of death with no fear. My only fear is not pleasing my Shepherd, it’s not the evil hiding in the shadows.
Verse 5 is the blessings from the Shepherd. He has invited us to the table. We are family, not just someone who drives by the house on Thanksgiving to see all the people inside enjoying the meal together while we patrol their neighborhood keeping everyone safe. We have a place at the table. The blessings from the Shepherd are too numerous to count. My cup overflows with provisions.
Lastly, know that while you are out there doing the job, He is watching your back. “Surely goodness and love will follow me?” Make no mistake, He is on duty with you, watching you and protecting you. He is your Shepherd. Are you following The Shepherd? If not, I encourage you to seek Him out. If you are the last part of verse 6 is for you, “and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.”
Investigational Resources: Read John chapter 10 for more information about The Good Shepherd.
Officer Safety Principle: The Good Shepherd is my master. Who is your master?
from Psalms Through the Eyes of a Cop, Volume 1
©by Charles Gilliland. Used by permission.
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