Just recently my friend and I went to one of the most picturesque places in England. The Lake District has beautiful peaks and amazing views that make you feel as though you were in Middle Earth. I kept waiting for the Fellowship to burst over the hills, but unfortunately, it didn’t happen.

One of the other aspects I enjoyed from the Lake District was the countless number of sheep. They were everywhere. There were some on the hillsides and others at the bases of the peaks.

At one point, I saw a sheep by himself. He was sat against the fence far from the others in his flock.

All I could think was how bad I felt for this poor little sheep. Over and over in my mind, I wondered why he was alone and if the owner would notice if I took him home with me.

And then I realized something. Jesus, the Good Shepherd, looks at me with the same tenderness of heart. He has a deep, unpretentious, authentic passion for me as an individual and as a member of His flock.

Matthew 9:36 reads, “Seeing the people, He [Jesus] felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and dispirited like sheep without a shepherd.”

Jesus saw the pain of the people. He witnessed firsthand their ailments, their spirit’s desperate need for a Savior, a Redeemer. And rather than simply observing this reality, Jesus felt compassion, sympathy, love.

Our God is not some far-off, disinterested, disinclined deity. No, He is a Father jealous for our heart’s affection. He knows us intimately, He created us with intention and purpose.

The enemy will do everything in his power to isolate us, to make us feel as though our Lord neither understands nor cares about our situations and struggles. I want to tell you right now that he is a liar, and he has no authority over us.

He [the Holy Spirit] Who is in us is stronger than he [the evil one] who is in the world. We are more than conquerors through Christ who daily renews our strengths, who moment-by-moment refreshes us with His living water. If we would learn to sit and learn His heart, to study His Word, to listen for His voice, our lives and the lives of those around us would begin to transform in indescribable ways.

Jesus doesn’t look at you and shake His head in disappointment. He wants to bring you into His flock, to draw you close to His bosom and take your yoke for His. Today I truly want you to understand the eyes through which the Lord looks at us.

He is compassionate and kind, merciful and overrunning with grace. Press into Him and allow His power to renew your spirit, to transform your mind. I want to finish with the final two verses of Matthew 9:

37 Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.

38 Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.”

May His compassion run over in our lives and flow into a broken, hurting world both now and in the future days to come.

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