Have you ever heard the tale of old Shep? Near where our daughter and family live in Montana, overlooking the Missouri River and the Great Northern Railroad, is a monument erected to pay tribute to old Shep, a collie dog that had belonged to an old shepherd. Wherever the man went Shep was always at his side.

Then in 1936 Shep’s master died. Shep accompanied him the final time when men took his body to the train station, from whence it would be shipped back East for burial. Shep tried to board the train with his master, but was put off. As the train pulled from the station, Shep followed as far as he could. Losing sight of the train, he returned to the station where he dug a spot under the depot, from which he would keep vigil for the return of his master. Through six cold, snowy Montana winters and five springs he would expectantly greet the arrival of each train, looking for his master’s return. In January, 1942, a train struck the old dog, killing him. Railroaders who had befriended and fed the dog buried him on a bluff, and the monument was erected in his memory.

Are we, as Christians, as faithful as was old Shep as we look for the return of our Master? Unlike Shep, our Master will return. When God’s table of time is completed, “He that shall come will come, and will not tarry” (Hebrews 10:3 7). Though years pass, we are “looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior, Jesus Christ” (Titus 3:13). The question is: ARE YOU READY?

Ron Bartanen
via Arthur church of Christ
Arthur, IL
Bulletin Digest (Nov. 2005)

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