Cowboy Boots and Sheep Dogs

A number of years ago, I went with a group of men from the church I was serving at the time, to the Sunbelt Agriculture Expo, in Moultrie, Georgia. I remember them telling me to be sure and wear my cowboy boots because they didn’t want me to underdressed. “Got it, ” I said.

Well, when they arrived to pick me up I noticed every one of them was wearing tennis shoes. While I thought it strange, I didn’t say anything. I was excited to be going and I truly enjoyed being around these men.

The expo is held every year at an old air-base and there is a lot of cement and concrete, where the tents are set up. After an hour or so of the hot sun, wearing a pair of boots that weren’t broke-in, I was exhausted and my feet were killing me. I started to fall behind the other men and with a smile on their face they asked me if I were okay. When I told them I was fine but my feet were killing me – everyone of them began laughing. One of them said, “Pastor, you should have worn tennis shoes!”

What they thought was funny, I thought was cruel, well not really, I knew it was a joke, and they enjoyed pulling the prank. Fortunately, the men had brought a pair of shoes for me to put on, and the rest of the day went great! Good friends – you got to love them!

One of the event I most enjoyed was watching the dogs as they herded the sheep. It was amazing. Several dogs at the same time would be in the field and what was so amazing was that each dog responded only to the commands given by their owner. They knew their owners voice and responded in obedience to that voice alone.

I’m reminded of what Jesus said in John 10: 14, “I am the good shepherd. I know my own sheep and my sheep know me.” Watching the dogs work was amazing. But, what is more amazing is that Go knows me an He desires that I hear His voice. There are so many voices speaking today – some good and some not.

Today, more than ever, it’s vital that we know God’s voice and that we follow Him and obey His command. And as a result of doing so, we will have abundant life! Today, I pray that we will be empowered by the Holy Spirit to hear the voice of God clearly in a world filled with so many clamoring for our attention. God, help us to listen to your voice and obey with joy!

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