Your first ministry may be your spouses, your children, or your in laws and they may be baby Christians who do not know much. God is saying, if you LOVE ME, you will feed them. This is not just about physical eating. You must be one to teach and witness spiritual food to grow the lambs or baby Christians. Your feeding them spiritual milk, your words and conduct walking as Jesus did is the food for them to digest. If you reject and cannot endure such lambs, then we are rejecting and denying Jesus and thus failing our tests. Our tests, trials, and tribulations is represented by the CROSS. We must carry our cross daily which is to face our tests and trials, die to ourselves, sacrificing so the baby lambs may live as we lay down our lives.
2 TEND (nurture, guard, guide, and fold) the flock of God that is [your responsibility], not by coercion or constraint, but willingly; not dishonorably motivated by the advantages and profits [belonging to the office], but eagerly and cheerfully;
3 Not domineering [as arrogant, dictatorial, and overbearing persons] over those in your charge, but being examples (patterns and models of Christian living) to the flock (the congregation).
4 And [then] when the Chief Shepherd is revealed, you will win the [a]conqueror’s crown of glory.
Acts 20:28-29 Take care and be on guard for yourselves and the whole flock over which the Holy Spirit has appointed you bishops and guardians, to shepherd (tend and feed and guide) the church of the Lord or [d]of God which He obtained for Himself [buying it and saving it for Himself] with His own blood.
29 I know that after I am gone, ferocious wolves will get in among you, not sparing the flock;