Friday, May 13, 2016

A Shepherd's Heart: What's In a name? (AKA How the name came about.)

Throughout scripture and History as we know it, names are significant. Whether a force for good or evil, you and I recall names. 

For years I've wanted to share the story of how the name and ministry of A Shepherd's Heart came about and this post is a brief retelling of just that. 

For as long as I can remember, even through hard times of depression and insecurity, I've always been what they call a "people person".  I've been wired to seek out and help meet the needs of others. 

Many years ago the calling on my life became clear and that calling had much to do with shepherding others as a pastor, lay person...shepherding in and out of the church meeting place. Shepherding people helping meet the spiritual and physical needs of others. 

As I read the Bible and started walking more seriously with Christ I learned that God wants shepherds to, as silly as it may sound as it should be a given, shepherd His flock and take it seriously.  It's not always a given today because many have missed or ignored what a call to shepherding is.

Another thing I recognized is that many staff pastors have a very tough job, put in long hours and often need pastoral care themselves however for various reasons, they weren't receiving it. I also recognized that many non-staff people were also hurting and need someone to reach out and care for them as Jesus modeled for us. 

Many years ago I was a part of a local church and God impressed upon me that one thing He wanted me to do as a shepherd, (whether on staff somewhere or not) is to regularly reach out to encourage and support the pastoral staff of the church I was a part of. 

At this time, I was working full time elsewhere and working my way through Bible college (via night school mainly) while helping raise a young family and serving regularly at my home church. 

I started talking to the staff pastors in person and via e-Mailing and calling them asking them things such as: 
1. How could I be praying for them?
2. How could I support them?
3. Was there anything I could help them with that they didn't have time for or that they didn't     have the bandwidth to fulfill. 
4. How they were doing? 
5. How could I support them?
6. etc. 

I genuinely wanted to help them in anyway I could. The same was true of non staff people as well as I reached out to them.

After some time passed I remember an e-Mail reply I received from the Worship Pastor upon receiving one of my regular communications. 

He said at the end of his response, "Do you know that you have a Shepherd's Heart!?" "You have a shepherd's heart!" 

I was very moved by his question because although that's how I was trying to live for the Lord, I was very encouraged by his encouragement and it all the more solidified for me God's calling on my life.To be a servant-shepherd to whomever He placed in my life. It spoke real words of blessing on my life.

The same became clear in every workplace God placed me in, it's was shepherding but in a different environment. 

From that day forward I realized that I needed to all the more follow God's calling and help serve Him as a shepherd helping people grow in their relationships with Him and live life on purpose!

Once Websites, Blogs and the like became a thing, the name that came to the forefront was "A Shepherd's Heart" as It's a reflection of who I am in Christ and a life's work that God has called me to. 

This call has led me to be a shepherd-servant pastor in many places in and out of the church through the community. It's moved me into the workplace specifically where other believers seek me out. It's brought me to e-Mail and social media reaching other people in need of hope, encouragement and faith. It's brought me to one-on-one encouragement, counseling and discipleship and it's led me to many other opportunities as like every believer should, I continually seek to be ready in season and out to serve God and His people. 

It's a blessing to serve the Lord and you as a servant-shepherd. To be here for His people and others in the good as well as the trying times helping meet them where they are is a huge blessing and very humbling. 

I hope that you're inspired to live out His calling on your life day-to-day. Let's pray for each other that that would be our aim all the days of our seek Him and serve Him with everything that is within us!

So, what is God calling you to do? Will you do it? I pray you will! 

In Christ Alone,
Your Brother and Servant,


P.S. Your prayers are always appreciated as we seek to live life together on purpose! 

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