Feed My Sheep

April 4, 2022 by  
Filed under Daily Devotions

By Susan Dollyhigh –

The gravel crunched under my tires as I drove into the parking lot of the old, white-frame cottage. I parked my car and entered the homeless shelter where a motley crew of men, women, and children were waiting for me to lead them in Bible study. This group had been at the shelter for a couple of months, and I had gotten to know them well.

We spent time in God’s Word, and right after we closed in prayer, a local church dropped off a donation of four large pizzas. And pizza is a treat at the homeless shelter.

“Please stay and eat with us!” Lisa said.

I’d already distributed goody bags to everyone, packed my bag, and was ready to go out the door. And honestly, I couldn’t stand the thought of taking even one slice of their pizza.

“Thank- you, but I’d better go home,” I said.

“Oh, come on. We have plenty!” Lisa said.

Another resident chimed in, “Yes, please stay!”

I knew they appreciated the small goody bags I brought each week, and could sense they were excited to be able to offer something to me in return.

“Oh…okay,” I said.

Lisa grabbed the pizza boxes and hurried out to the back porch where she placed them on a rickety, old table. An eclectic mix of chairs was gathered, and Lisa pulled out the one at the head of the table, “You sit here, Ms. Susie.”

I soon realized I was the guest of honor as the residents scurried around…taking care of me. One of the children proudly set a Coke before me, and Lisa placed pizza on a paper plate, insisting I be served first. Everyone soon settled down and began eating, but their joy over sharing a meal with me was apparent as we talked, and laughed, and ate pizza together on the back porch. My heart soon felt full to the point of overflowing by the love lavished on me by my homeless friends.

Three times Jesus asked Peter, who had claimed to love Jesus more than the other disciples, if he truly loved Him. Each time Peter answered yes and Jesus response was, “feed my lambs”, “ take care of my sheep”, and “feed my sheep.”

I’d come to care for those living at the shelter, but what a blessing I would have denied both the residents and myself, had I not allowed them the opportunity to care for me.

Prayer: Father, thank- you for the opportunities You give us to “take care of Your sheep.” Thank-you for blessing our hearts in such wonderful ways. In Jesus Name, Amen.

Bible Verse: “The third time he said to him, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me?’ Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, ‘Do you love me?’ He said, ‘Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.’ Jesus said, ‘Feed my sheep’ ” (John 21:17 NIV).

About Susan Dollyhigh

Susan Shelton Dollyhigh is a free-lance writer, columnist and speaker. Susan has two children and three wonderful grandchildren and resides in Mount Airy, North Carolina. Susan is a contributing author in Spirit and Heart: A Devotional Journey, Faith and Finances: In God We Trust and The Ultimate Christian Living. Susan’s articles and devotionals have appeared in Connection Magazine, Exemplify Magazine, Mustard Seed Ministry, P31 Woman, The Upper Room and The Secret Place. She is also a contributing online writer for ChristianDevotions.us and InternetCafeDevotions.com.
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