Shepherding and sheep

Yesterday’s Scripture texts focused on shepherding and sheep:

Jeremiah 23:1-4: “Woe to the shepherds who are destroying and scattering the sheep of my pasture!” declares the Lord. Therefore this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says to the shepherds who tend my people: “Because you have scattered my flock and driven them away and have not bestowed care on them, I will bestow punishment on you for the evil you have done,” declares the Lord. “I myself will gather the remnant of my flock out of all the countries where I have driven them and will bring them back to their pasture, where they will be fruitful and increase in number. I will place shepherds over them who will tend them, and they will no longer be afraid or terrified, nor will any be missing,” declares the Lord.”

Psalm 23: The Lord is my shepherd….  

Mark 6:34: When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began teaching them many things.”

We have been striving at Campus Edge to become clearer about our mission, including and especially who we are trying to reach. Who are our sheep? Who are the sheep without a shepherd? What are the lost sheep that we should leave the other 99 for? And are we, like the priest who gave the sermon, willing to look hard at how and where we have been failing in the task of shepherding, in order to prevent the sheep from being scattered?

I do not know the immediate answers to those questions, as they are hard ones. I know that as a ministry we have not done very well this past year in reaching out to faculty nor on reaching out to those who are not Christians. Have we thus been faithful to the sheep who have been given to us? How do we be faithful to those who have sought Campus Edge out, while also being a place that seeks the lost? Many are struggling and getting lost: there are, after all, so many ways to get lost, both as a Christian within the academy and as an academic within the church.

As we continue to ask how Campus Edge can be faithful in reaching out to Michigan State, pray that we might wisdom in our conversations about shepherding and that we might grow to care about those who are searching and lost.

A longer variation of this blog was originally published on Brenda’s personal blog.