This is now the third time that Jesus shewed himself to his disciples, after that he was risen from the dead. So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs. -John 21:14, 15 (KJV)
I am certain taking care of livestock on a farm is a tremendous challenge. They must daily be fed, given water, and provided with shelter. Every day I make sure our dog, Ada, is cared for. Failure to provide the basic needs of food and water would be to neglect taking care of an animal placed under our care. We love our dog so much we are as willing to provide for her as we would be a human member of the family. When I consider the responsibility of providing for hundreds of animals, however, I realize the magnitude of such a task. Farmers and keepers of livestock have my deepest respect for the challenges they daily face in meeting this demand. Followers of Christ who have leadership over the flock of God also have a serious charge, which is to provide for the spiritual needs of the church. Spiritual sustenance must be provided through biblical preaching, teaching, and encouraging the flock to a closer walk with Christ.
Consider also those who provide for the flock must themselves be spiritually fed as well. Pastors, church leaders, and all who share in the care of the church must daily be fed by the Word of God and prayer. Failure to do so will limit our ability to provide for the needs of the church. Following the resurrection, Jesus gave Peter a serious charge: “Feed my lambs.” Peter was to go forward in the power of the resurrection and provide for the spiritual needs of Jesus’ followers. He was not to coerce them, berate them, or attempt to push them forward. Rather, Peter was called to feed them. The Scripture bears witness how following the resurrection Peter served the Lord in faithfulness.
We are quickly approaching the time of year when we contemplate the resurrection of our Lord Jesus. Will we walk forward, like Peter, in the power of the resurrection? Will we stand firm upon the truths of God’s Word and faith? All around us people are turning and drifting away from the Lord. Christ calls us to stand firm and serve Him in faithfulness. Let us not surrender to the apathy which so permeates our culture. By faith let us claim the power of the resurrection. If Jesus were to confront us today with the question of our devotion, let’s be ready to answer in the affirmative that we do indeed love Him. We will then demonstrate our love by reaching out to others.
Walk in faith.
Live in prayer.
Die to self.
Give to Jesus our all.