The LORD loves the gates of Zion…. (Psalm 87:2).
A gate represents entrance into a new place. Inside the gate is something different than what we’ve experienced. If we pay the entrance fee, know the code or the gatekeeper, we can enter into what lies behind.
Sometimes my heart swims around in anger, keeping me from entering into the gates of God’s love, mercy, joy, peace, and hope. Jesus, as the Good Shepherd guards the gate. He keeps thieves and robbers out. He only lets those good things for us into the gate. Jesus loves His sheep. He feeds, protects and provides for them there in His sheepfold.
Some Christians never enter into the place of God’s joy, abundance and rest, because they spend all their time dwelling on past and present hurts. They cannot receive the Father’s peace and joy for their heart, because the troubles of this world have weighed them down in a place of desolation.
Left to our own negative thoughts we cannot experience God’s freedom for His sheep who have learned to walk by faith. The ones who have learned to run back to the Good Shepherd, releasing the injustice done to them and the pain in their hearts over their present and past seasons.
Sometimes the Good Shepherd wants to make us new, but our hearts want to keep us stuck in bitterness, anger, and hatred. I feel my own heart constantly being drawn towards bitterness in this present season of life. Then, I am reminded of the Good Shepherd and His love for me. I am reminded that I can entrust my whole life to God, even the parts that feel painful and unfair. I can give him my hurts so that a root of bitterness does not shoot up in my heart.
I keep having this thought in my mind-“God saw that.” This gives me hope that He is working to redeem every injustice brought upon my life that the enemy tried to use against me for my destruction. The enemy wants to destroy my faith, grow a root of bitterness in my heart and make me believe that God is unfair. The enemy is a liar.
Therefore, we must take captive every thought and make it obedient to Christ. When we do, His grace awaits us there as He opens the gate and ushers us into the place of His lasting peace, joy, and victory.
Lord, I trust and believe. You see everything. You are redeeming all of it. I believe it. Today I guard my heart against anything that would try to set itself up to destroy my faith. I claim my victory in Christ. Thank you for Shepherding my soul. Thank you that your plans for me are good, in Jesus name, Amen.