“And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, "The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.” (Matthew 9:35-38)
This is just one of my favorite pieces of scripture. It shows so much about Jesus. He taught others, he proclaimed the gospel; he healed people of their diseases and afflictions. It shows his heart, when he looks out on crowds, he feels compassion. He sees them as harassed and helpless, sheep without a shepherd.
I have often asked of the LORD to help me to be like Him according to this scripture. I have asked Him to help me to do His work, for His kingdom, through His eyes- to teach and proclaim the gospel of the kingdom, to pray for healing for people with illness, to encourage those in affliction. To shepherd and have compassion on those who are harassed and helpless, who do not know the One True God, the Good Shepherd.
However, where I struggle is letting go of the work that is not mine. I am to pray for more laborers, not try to labor and do everything. I have to remember that in the scripture above, Jesus did not look out to the crowds and feel overwhelmed because there were too many sick people, or overwhelmed because there were too many who did not know the gospel, or too many sheep to shepherd! He felt compassion, he taught and proclaimed, he healed those he was supposed to, and what he could not do, he prayed for others to come and labor.
As I meditate on my scripture memory verse “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work.” (John 4:34), I have to continue to ask for wisdom and discernment to what work I am to accomplish . . . to obey and do what He’s asked of me (and the freedom to say “no” to what he’s not asked of me), to feel compassion for others, but not to get overwhelmed and discouraged. He sustains me. He does not overwhelm me. His will is my food . . . Nothing more, nothing less.