Thursday, July 15, 2010

What He Said - From Aesop to Matthew

Did you ever hear the term "wolf in sheep's clothing"?  It like many other frequently used quotes has an origin that goes back to over 500 years before the birth of Christ.  It is also referenced in the New Testament in the Gospel of Matthew, chapter 7, verse 15.  However, there is no difference at all in what the two translations mean.

Aesop's story evolved around a wolf that disguised himself as a sheep in order to be able to enjoy a fine meal of mutton.  The biblical reference warns us to "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves".  

We endeavor to teach our children this as they are growing up.  We try to teach them the difference between someone who is trustworthy and potentially a good friend versus someone who is an opportunist and guising himself in your presence to gain rich's and spoils at your expense.  The rough part is that even as adults, we have to learn this lesson over and over again.

We may become more skeptical and less trusting, but at some point, that big bad wolf is going to reach out and snatch our very soul from us.  Even if only for a brief moment, I guarantee you, it has happened to each and every one of us at some point in our lives.  It could be that bully on the playground with little ones, the jock that befriends the geek in high school only to make a mockery of him at a later time, the co-worker that chums up to you in order to determine your weak point and then takes advantage of it.  Any one of us has been the recipient of the cruel attack of that wolf, but we are also human, and at one point or another in our lives, sadly, I bet we've been the wolf, too.  This all goes back to something I said several blogs earlier - can't we just all get along?

Throughout our lives, we should all have a passion.  We are not just a body.  We have a soul and within our soul lives our passion.  Within each of us is the ability to make a difference in so many ways.  Exist to be passionate!  Make a difference in not just your own existence, but the very breath of life of each and every person around you.  This crazy world of ours is full of false prophets, of wolves in sheep's clothing.  Set out to be the sheep or a shepherd, not the wolf.  By your example, others will follow.

As far as the wolves out there are concerned, take off that musty rented costume.  There's a lot to be learned before you have the right to howl at the moon.  

In Galatians 6:14, Paul says "May it never be that I would boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world."  I think what Paul is saying is this - by boasting only in the cross of Jesus and making IT your ONLY focus or passion, you will then be able to freely enjoy all of the good things that He has in mind for you and they will begin to will fall into place.  I am just as guilty as is the next person when it comes to this, and I openly admit it.  I am not proud of some of the things that I've said and done during my life.  But I do know this much, I don't want to be the wolf.  I want to be able to bask in glory, reap my rewards in Heaven and be a sheep with the greatest Shepherd of all.

Be a cross centered person in every facet of your life and it will help you to keep the wolf at bay.  

Remember, Jesus charges us all to "feed my sheep".

Restored and at peace,