The sheep of Jesus Christ are a combination of the young, old, strong, hardy, feeble, extroverted, happy, sorrowful, introverted, timid, bold, gentle, strong-willed, weak-willed, mild, wounded individuals. A preacher must cater for individual sheep with the nourishment it needs and in the manner best suited to it. If you handle the wounded, young, weak and gentle as though you were handling the strong, old, bold and self-willed you will overdrive it and probably kill it, and lose it. Some indeed need hard rebuke to submit in obedience to divine precepts, but for some others, what they need is gentle and persuasive plea, and they will yield.
Some need challenge, and some need comfort and encouragement; and yet, some others need a combination of all!The way a preacher should speak with and approach a self-condemned and remorseful sinner (Luke 7:37-48; Acts 16:27-33) would be different from the way he would deal with a self-righteous and hardened hypocrite (Acts 8:18-24; Act 13:6-12).A preacher must be sensitive enough to be balanced in the approach of feeding the flock and try not to leave anyone out. We must be sensitive to the Holy Spirit and be balanced in our approach from time to time for a productive result.Hear the words of a typical Shepherd – Jacob, when the hardy and strong Esau wanted him to journey with him and his warrior company: “My lord knoweth that the children are tender, and the flocks and herds with young are with me: and if men should overdrive them one day, all the flock will die” (Gen 33:13).Again, Paul the spiritual New Testament shepherd:”Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men” (Thesis 5:4).To whom it may concern.Peace.
culled from Raphael Olanrewaju