The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. — Psalm 23:1 NKJV
Psalm 23 is one of the most well-known and loved psalms. Sometimes, however, the words may become so familiar we miss their meaning. Have you considered what David meant when he penned the famous words, “The Lord is my shepherd”?
In the six verses of this psalm, we learn much about our Shepherd.
- We shall not want. Our Shepherd is our provider.
- He makes us lie down in green pastures. Sheep are fearful animals and cannot lie down unless they feel secure. Our Shepherd offers peaceful pasture.
- He leads us beside still waters. Sheep are afraid of fast-flowing water. Our Shepherd leads us to still water.
- He restores our souls. Our Shepherd refreshes us.
- He leads us in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Our Shepherd’s actions stem from His great love for us.
- He is with us through the valley of the shadow of death. Through trials, tribulations, and death, we have nothing to fear. Why? Because our Shepherd will never leave us nor forsake us.
- His rod and His staff comfort us. Our Shepherd uses His rod and staff to rescue, protect, and guide us.
- He prepares a table for us and anoints our heads with oil. Our Shepherd not only prepares a table for us, but He prepares a banquet for us. Then He anoints our heads with oil, something done only to honored guests.
- Our cups run over. Our Shepherd blesses us abundantly.
- Goodness and mercy will follow us all the days of our lives. Our Shepherd pursues us with loving care.
- We who are in Christ will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Our Shepherd will take us to heaven, and we will live in His presence forever.
Lord Jesus, You are the Good Shepherd who lovingly cares for His flock. Like sheep, we have gone astray. Like sheep, we are fearful and cannot rest unless we feel secure. But as our loving Shepherd, You make us lie down in green pastures, You lead us beside still waters, You restore our souls. Lord, this very moment, will You show this reader how much You love and care for her? In Your name, amen.
About Hope for the Valley
Hope for the Valley is the ministry God has entrusted to J.K. Stewart—wife, breast cancer survivor, and follower of Jesus Christ. Soon after her diagnosis, she started a women’s cancer support group. Two years later, she launched Hope for the Valley, a website of devotions and prayers for women with cancer. J.K. lives in Texas with her husband, dog, and four cats. When she’s not writing, she’s either studying her Bible, walking her dog, or vacuuming pet hair. Connect with her and the ministry of Hope for the Valley on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+.