Sheep have a bad reputation, often seen as one of the dumbest animals on the planet. But a recent University of Cambridge study reveals they’re actually quite clever. The research proves that sheep can be trained to recognize human faces from photographs, and they can identify a picture of their handler without prior training. Given their relatively large brains and longevity, researchers are hoping the humble sheep can help in the study of neurodegenerative disorders like Huntington’s disease.

Jesus compared believers in Jesus to sheep—a reference I’ve thought as primarily negative. “All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own” (Isaiah 53:6).

But although we do tend to wander from God, when we acknowledge Jesus as our Good Shepherd and take the time to know Him, He provides everything we need for “a rich and satisfying life” (Psalm 23:1; John 10:10). Jesus says, “I am the good shepherd; I know my own sheep, and they know me, just as my Father knows me and I know the Father” (John 10:14).

False shepherds, however, threaten to steal the delight of our relationship with Jesus (John 10:1-10). Whether it’s bingeing on our favorite TV series, scrolling through our social media platforms, or watching videos of some big-name motivational speaker, there are plenty of distractions that can easily draw us away from the only One who genuinely loves us and gave His life for us (John 10:11-13).

Doing dumb things doesn’t have to be our instinct. We can be clever sheep as God leads us, listening to and obeying the Good Shepherd. It starts by recognizing who we are and whose we are—sheep of the Good Shepherd and children of the Most High God.

NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: Acts 4:23-37