Monday, January 30, 2012

Pastural theology

Lately, I've been thinking about farming.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not planning to forsake my ordination vows. Nor am I considering the bi-vocational option of preaching by day and raising chickens by night. Instead, I've been considering the origins of the pastoral office.

Tonight I read this quote from God found in Ezekiel 34, "I will pasture [my people] on the mountains of Israel." The words, "I will pasture" struck me.

First, I was reminded that God is the example a good shepherd.
Second, I realized that the shepherd doesn't feed the sheep, she finds good land for them graze.
Third, I determined that good grazing land is safe land. Therefore a shepherd must guard and protect his sheep from threats--both within and out.
Fourth, I figured that part of the third thing was that a hungry shepherd should not eat the sheep.
Fifth, I wondered if there was anything else I was missing in the shepherding role.
Sixth, I decided that I couldn't think of anything else.

In summary: Learn from God. Find good land. Protect the flock. Don't eat the sheep.
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