May God’s voice give you comfort and remind you of his love.
The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep.
The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice.
He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.
When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them,
and his sheep follow him because they know his voice.
But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him
because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.”
I am the good shepherd;
I know my sheep and my sheep know me—
just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—
and I lay down my life for the sheep.
I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen.
I must bring them also.
They too will listen to my voice
and there shall be one flock and one shepherd.
--John 10::2-5; 14-16
The other night my devotions included the above passage in John 10 about Jesus as the shepherd whose sheep know his voice. I started thinking about the way we recognize the voices of those we love.
I was in a mall with a high school friend and she suddenly stopped and said, “Oh! There’s my mom.” I looked at her questioningly and she said, “I heard her ‘pee-wheet.’” What? I thought back a little and realized I had heard some kind of high pitched noise right before my friend said that. Turns out, in their family when they want to find each other, they let out a high pitched almost-whistle type of noise, loud and piercing, that sounds like “PEE-WHEET!” They draw in their lips and then explode them out with the high pitched “Pee,” following with the second syllable, “Wheet.” Very effective. We heard her mom from way across the mall.
My kids, adults now, use a “bird call.” (I did not teach them this, not sure where they picked it up - but it works!) It’s kind of like a crow call, “Ha-HAAA.” Their kids know and use it, too. My youngest granddaughter, not quite two, only says a few words but understands much. When my son was telling me about using the bird call, she heard the phrase bird call and gave her own version of it, “Aw-haa!”
Another time I recognized a loved one, it wasn’t actually a voice. I was sitting in a conference room waiting for my son to pick me up from work. I heard a truck rumble to the sidewalk in front of the room’s wall and said, “My son’s here.” I hadn’t even realized I could recognize the sound of his truck!
And, of course, the classic is a mother’s voice. When a baby is crying, often all she has to hear is her mother’s voice and she is comforted.
How about you? Do you have voices (or sounds) that you and your loved ones know? A good reminder of our shepherd’s voice. Tell me about them! Thank God for the love we know in his voice.