Are you ONE worth saving?

Brutal, bitter cold.  For those of you who do not understand what this is like simply climb into your freezer, shut the door and stay there for 12 hours…which you really shouldn’t do because that would be deadly…so don’t try this at home…use your imagination. But hopefully, you get the picture ….but you’d also have to add a jet engine blowing sub zero winds towards you and into the nook and crannies of your bones. It’s the opposite of warmth or anything that resembles comfort – ponder that for a moment.

Naturally during the coldest week of the year our first doe decided to kid. I kept hoping my calculations would be off or that she’d just wait…(like a pregnant anything can just wait) but sure enough, Sunday evening…here came four babies. We did everything we could to set up that area with as much protection and heat as we could but two had died by morning. Two were left and one was pretty pathetic. Meds were given, we did all we could but the third was just too weak, it didn’t last beyond two more hours. I’ve lost animals over the years but I really, really do not like getting rid of perfectly good, frozen babies. It is just heartbreaking.

One survivor. A little while buck (that would be boy).

We have gone to great lengths to keep this little guy alive and well.

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I’ve spent countless hours this week in a frozen tundra of a barn and let me tell you cold is exhausting.

It can be tricky to keep these little ones alive. You don’t want to warm them up so much that they will get pneumonia when they go back out into the cold. You don’t want to leave them so chilled. So, we are always attempting to regulate his body temperature. He needs to eat and eat often so he needs his momma. It’s a day by day, hour by hour watch and wait and see and hope.

So far, he’s gaining weight and strength. Now, those lungs have to stay clear.

It’s not like there isn’t going to be a whole lot more babies. And oh, I am praying that the bitter cold doesn’t return for those-

It isn’t like he’s going to make or break us, financially.

It’s hard on the mom, she wants her babies…and she’s only got one left.

As much as it is the right thing to do, he’s ours, in our care, we are the owners and shepherds over this herd…but, it’s more than that…

he matters to us.

He’s only one of countless others who come and go – who are sold and kept.

He’s only one but he matters.

Out of all the millions of souls walking around on this earth – you matter.

God was willing to step down into the mess, the bitter, cold, harsh and vile world. He went to great lengths for you.

It wasn’t because of the multitudes – although His death covers “them.”

It’s because of you.

You matter.

And when the thermometer drops well below zero it means the pumps and even the heated fountains can freeze

That means a lot more work for us. That means carrying a lot of water a few times a day.

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And it means extra measures. You are watching more closely, you are more attentive to everything…always looking for any signs of distress or illness.

You are on high alert.

Nothing is going to get past you because you herd depends upon you. Every single individual animal is examined and watched. Not the group as a whole, individually.

Our eyes are on each one.

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So it goes for you. Your Great Shepherd never leaves His watch over you. He never ceases to care, protect and intervene for you.

Even if you had been the only one who needed to be redeemed, carried, saved…

He would have stepped down and done that for you – that’s His love for you.

You have a hard time understanding it because you know who you really are –

you don’t see yourself as He sees you.

To anyone else, this little white buckling is just a goat.

Yes. True. But he’s ours and we are going to do everything in our power to make sure he makes it and thrives and grows and develops fully.

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You might see yourself as just another speck upon the earth, nothing special, nothing much to offer.

But you are HIS and He is going to woo you, pursue you, call you to Him so that you can become all that He meant you to become.

This little white goat kid didn’t ask us, beg us to save him.

He didn’t have to.

God’s already done something for you – you didn’t have to ask Him.

It’s done. Finished.

The work has been accomplished. Did you catch that? The work is completed. That means you cannot earn or work or weasel your way into His redemption. You cannot earn your way into His love or His family as one of His children.

What had to be done was done on the cross by the perfect lamb – an innocent, unblemished lamb.

So if you accept that gift of redemption you are therefore, in the care of a Shepherd who stakes a boundary around your pasture.

He watches over you. Protects you – you cannot even see all that He is doing, just like our goats never know all that we do.

Do they see all of our time and money invested in hauling and paying for feed, hay and minerals?

Do they see us as we consider treatments and preventative care?

How about keeping them clean and their housing clean and warm and free from drafts.

They are clueless about our care. They know they can trust us and that we always show up.

We are clueless about all of God’s care.

We can never know or even imagine all that He is doing for us, around us and yes, even inside of us.

You matter to Him.

Everything about you and your life matters to Him.

He rejoices over just one.

Because that one is you.

And you mater to Him.

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May friendship, encouragement and grace abound!