command & conquer

John 10

Parable of the Good Shepherd

1“Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter by the door into the fold of the sheep, but climbs up some other way, he is a thief and a robber.

2“But he who enters by the door is a shepherd of the sheep.

3“To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.

4“When he puts forth all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice.

5“A stranger they simply will not follow, but will flee from him, because they do not know the voice of strangers.”

6This figure of speech Jesus spoke to them, but they did not understand what those things were which He had been saying to them.

7So Jesus said to them again, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep.

8“All who came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them.

9“I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.

10“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.

11“I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.

12“He who is a hired hand, and not a shepherd, who is not the owner of the sheep, sees the wolf coming, and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them.

13“He flees because he is a hired hand and is not concerned about the sheep.

14“I am the good shepherd, and I know My own and My own know Me,

15even as the Father knows Me and I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep.

16“I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will hear My voice; and they will become one flock with one shepherd.

17“For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life so that I may take it again.

18“No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again This commandment I received from My Father.”

we went on a company outing last thursday to saturday. and on that friday, i grasped john 10 in a more tangible way. all because of a game called command & conquer, which is different from the computer game my siblings used to play. this one was closer to the game of the generals and to chess.

we had 3 teams, each with a commander, an ammo bearer, and soldiers. here’s an overview of how the game is played. everyone is blindfolded except for the commanders and the judges. the aim of the game is to eliminate the soldiers and ammo bearer of the other team. but the game could also end when a team runs out of ammo or the time limit is reached. the commander stays outside the battlefield and shouts orders. the ammo bearer distributes ammo to friendly soldiers, can shield friendly soldiers, and cannot fire unless he is the last man standing. and the soldiers can fire at will provided that they have ammo. friendly fire is allowed. water-filled ice bags are used as ammo.

i was the commander of the first team. and we played a single round robin, that means each team played against the other two teams, one at a time. during the first round, i lost a soldier due to friendly fire at the start of the game since the soldier i was commanding to fire to his left fired to his right instead. and the enemy ammo holder kept using his butt as a shield. it would have been a funny sight had it not been so infuriating. i had to move two soldiers at a time to get past him. those who did get eliminated played dirty by shouting orders to my team. it wasn’t against the rules. it just wasn’t noble, that’s why i called it dirty. we somehow won in spite of the great disadvantage of playing clean. i hardly had any voice left after that round from desperately screaming.

then round 2 came, and the other 2 teams played against each other. we got to rest, watch, and learn. but that round had to be stopped to prevent some bloodshed. so the team with more members left on the battlefield won. that would be the team we played against during the first round.

round 3 came quickly with an addition to the rules. “bawal dumikit sa kalaban.” didn’t matter, though. aim and fire was how we played since the first round. the soldier who didn’t get to play during the first round due to being eliminated was the first one i moved around. but he wasted 3 ammos even though his aim was great because he gripped the ammo too tightly and it kept exploding before hitting the target and splash damage didn’t count. there was another friendly fire later after an enemy got eliminated, due to false orders. then the new victim of friendly fire was coaching the one who hit him. but due to his directions, i lost another soldier because he stepped outside the battlefield. and i was left with one soldier and the ammo holder. that one soldier had her share of false orders from someone masquerading his voice to pretend to be one of us. but she knew our voices. so when she was told to aim, she would aim. she even followed how to throw. she had the most kills throughout the game, three in one just one round, and the only headshot! not to mention, she hit the enemy ammo holder twice, which did not count. the last one to get eliminated was very helpful in helping me move them around. the ammo holder was also a really great protector for her, since we were down to 2 vs 2 before the headshot.

i had to run around to battlefield to prevent them from stepping out of it and to be near enough to be heard. but the Lord is always near to those who seek Him.

i was victorious in leading blindfolded people. but He removes our blindness. and He laid down His own life on that cross and took it again and gave us victory over sin and the death that sin brings.

He is our good shepherd. His voice leads us home.

so i lay down that victory at His feet. and i pray that i would listen to His voice alone that i may not get lost and that whoever reads this might also be found. ^_^

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