by Sandy Kirby Quandt
As Hurricane Florence barrels toward the east coast of the United States, my thoughts and prayers are with all those in its paths. I pray the LORD will spare you and your families the devastation and pain I know can come from disastrous storms like this.
I pray God will fill you with his peace and presence and comfort you as only he can.
And for those not in this storm’s path, I pray for you also.
Because the storms we face in life are not limited to those of nature.
The Twenty-third Psalm has been on my mind quite a lot over the past few months. The more I study the words David penned all those many centuries ago, the more I appreciate his words, and find renewed comfort in them.
In my study I’ve discovered several important things to note in the Twenty-third Psalm. Perhaps you understood these points years ago, or like me, maybe they are points to an oft-quoted passage in the Bible we need reminded of.
Because God is our shepherd, we have everything we need. We don’t lack anything, even when we may feel otherwise. When our world is anything but peaceful, our Shepherd pulls us aside where the waters are calm. Away from the noise and strife of the world, to a place of rest in him.
When we walk in the midst of dark troubling paths, even to the valley of death, we don’t need to be afraid, because Jesus is walking that path right alongside us. He is guarding us. Guiding us. Staying close because he loves us, and nothing reaches us he didn’t plan or permit.
The rod of his power and strength are ready to protect us from the things that could harm us. His shepherd’s crook pulls us back to him when we go off on our own wayward path like the not-so-bright sheep we truly are.
The banquet set before us is just for us. Our enemies are left outside; staring in. They aren’t invited as we enjoy the goodness, mercy, and unfailing kindness of our Shepherd.
When our time here on earth ends, Jesus, our Good Shepherd, will take us to his home where we’ll live with him forever in the mansion he prepared for us. The mansion will be glorious, yes, but the most wonderful thing will be the fact we will be in the presence of God forever.
Do you have any addition thoughts on what the Twenty-third Psalm means to you? I’d love to hear them.
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The Lord is my shepherd; I have everything I need. He lets me rest in fields of green grass and leads me to quiet pools of fresh water. He gives me new strength. He guides me in the right paths, as he has promised. Even if I go through the deepest darkness, I will not be afraid, Lord, for you are with me. Your shepherd’s rod and staff protect me.
You prepare a banquet for me, where all my enemies can see me; you welcome me as an honored guestand fill my cup to the brim.I know that your goodness and love will be with me all my life;and your house will be my home as long as I live. Psalm 23 (GNT)
I wish you well.
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I have always found Psalm 23 to be very comforting, but it has taken me a long time to take these words to heart, to know that He is actually with us through it all. These words are life changing once you come to that realization.
Alyce, you are so right about how life changing it is once we realize Jesus is actually right there beside us whatever we go through.