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  • Writer's pictureAmy L. Boyd

Five Minute Friday: LIMIT


This week’s FMF writing prompt is: LIMIT




Setting the timer for 5 minutes…and…GO!


I’m attending the Festival of Faith and Writing this week in Grand Rapids Michigan. Thankful for the time away from regular life to focus on writing. There’s nothing like visiting cozy coffee shops in the middle of a work day. A carrot cake scone and a rose latte along with the sounds of people living their ordinary lives creates a synergy, and as a result, I am back at Five Minute Friday after a long absence. 


Yesterday I went to a session led by the knowledgable Leslie Leyland Fields about finding our voice within the Psalms. Nothing could be more classic than Psalm 23. As the shepherd guards his flock, it’s important to note the limits he places upon the sheep for their own protection. 


Psalm 23:4- I fear no danger, for you are with me; your rod and your staff- they comfort me. 


Picturing a rod and a staff often conjures images of punitive weapons that shepherds may use to protect the sheep from predators. In fact, they do use the rod, as David did, to eliminate threats against the herd. But the staff is more often used to guide the sheep and keep them close to the shepherd. A longer, thinner tool, often with a hook at one end, the shepherd could also use the staff around the neck of the wayward or strong-willed sheep to immediately bring her back to safety. 


To the sheep, the path forward may be unclear but the Shepherd always knows where they are going and the limits the sheep will need to get safely to the destination. 


The comfort in the rod and the staff is knowing that our Shepherd will always be near to reign us back into his presence and guide us home.  


Psalm 23:3- He renews my life; he leads me along the right paths for his name’s sake. (CSB)



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5 Comments


Dawn Fanshawe
Dawn Fanshawe
Apr 14

Thank you Amy. Hope you have a productive and exciting break. I'm so glad our shepherd has both rod and staff - He's sure needed it a few times! #7

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Alicia Baldwin-Evans
Alicia Baldwin-Evans
Apr 14

Hello, Amy! I got so excited when I saw your name in my inbox. It's been such a long time since it appeared there! I pray that life has been kind during your sabbatical, and I hope this is the first of many new posts moving forward. Love and light, Alicia

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Annette V
Annette V
Apr 13

yes indeed. FMF11

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Jeannie P
Jeannie P
Apr 12

Oh, I envy you being at FFW! I was there once, in 2010; it was so good. I would have loved to hear Leslie Leyland Fields speak. Her book Forgiving our Fathers & Mothers was wonderful. I like the idea of limits in terms of the shepherd's guidance, done for the sheep's own good. Thanks so much for sharing. Jeannie (#5 in the FMF linkup)

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tempusfugit02
Apr 12

Good to see you again!


Yeah, OK, I am a sheep,

and I now can face the truth

that I've gone through life asleep;

fersure my scars are living proof

that I've wandered far and wide,

fell into every deep crevasse

as the Shepherd stood and sighed

and said, 'What a pain in the a***!'

before He climbed on down to me,

with His hands a loving grace

that would once more set me free

as I bleated in his face

and tried, to His amused surprise,

to pull on the wool over His eyes.

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