“When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice.” (John 10:4)
Mothers have an amazing gift to be able to distinguish the voice of their child in the midst of a crowd. Among the many voices, the sound of the child’s voice is imbedded in the mother’s memory so strongly that it acts like radar.
Jesus was speaking about a similar gift given to his disciples. He tells us that his sheep hear and know his voice among the many voices that seek our time and attention. God gives us a gift of faith that distinguishes Jesus’ voice from all others. It is a voice that becomes familiar and we learn to trust it to comfort, guide and protect us from the voices that would kill and destroy us.
It is the voice of the Good Shepherd who has demonstrated his love and care for us by giving up his life at the cross. Jesus has paid the price of our sin and risen from the grave to demonstrate that he is the true shepherd. His love for us is without limits and will be ours even beyond death.
He calls us to listen to his voice. It is not necessarily an audible voice as much as it is the words spoken to the heart that needs hope and healing. His voice is the reassurance that he knows our needs and hears our cries for help. The voice of the Good Shepherd is the forgiveness of sins, the strength to rejoice in troubles and the peace that passes all understanding.
We learn to trust his voice as we study and meditate upon his words. His voice becomes our source peace in world of chaos and turmoil. Our ears become tuned to the movement and prompting of the Holy Spirit as he directs our lives. Our thoughts, words and actions begin to give evidence we are listening to the voice of the One who called us to be his. When we listen to his voice our lives become filled with the blessings of a relationship with the Good Shepherd. You can hear his voice in John chapter 10.