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The Lord Is My Shepherd

The Lord Is My Shepherd

Psalms 23:1-6(NKJV) - The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name's sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the Lord Forever.

This is such a beautiful picture of an ideal relationship with The Lord. It's really all about trust. With God as our shepherd, our needs are met because sheep are completely dependent on their shepherd. Sheep may not have a personal storehouse of grass hidden somewhere but they don't worry about it, they just eat what the shepherd puts before them. When Jesus taught us to pray He said in Matthew 6:11, "Give us this day our daily bread." That's a powerful concept because it demonstrates our need to seek God daily for sustenance and not trust our own resources. If we don't put our trust in God on a daily basis we are building our lives on shaky ground.

As our shepherd, God knows how to direct our lives to green pastures where we can be sustained. Then He makes us lie down there for a season. Shepherds know where to find grass and our Shepherd can do even better, He has the power to make grass grow anywhere He wants. So the same way God first created Eden then put Adam and Eve within it, anywhere God puts you already has the provision you need built into it. That's why Jesus said in Matthew 6:33(KJV); "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you." You just need to seek God and He will give you what you need.

Also, God knows when we need rest. He provides times of refreshing in His presence according to Acts 3:19. He can pluck us out of storms and put us beside still waters when we need them. So sometimes He slows our lives down for our own good. We must not complain when things slow down because it's only at that time that our souls can be restored. Jesus said in Matthew 11:28-29(KJV); "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls."

God leads us in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake. In other words, His reputation is on the line not ours. With God as our shepherd we are led down the right path at all times because His name is at stake. He understands that if He directs our lives and we completely trust Him the onus is on Him to make sure things work out in our favor. Hence, He sticks His neck out for us and puts His name on the line when He directs us to do something. If it doesn't work out it will make Him look bad.

Even in evil times, God is with us and as a result, we have nothing to fear. The Bible says in 1 John 4:8 that God is love and 1 John 4:18 that perfect love casts out all fear. Therefore, since God is perfect love, as long as He is with you along your journey through tough times there is no room for fear. What's interesting is that during the journey through the valley of the shadow of death comfort comes from God's rod and staff. Do you know that the shepherd's staff is actually used sometimes to set sheep straight and keep them in line? Maybe that explains why some of the best correction we ever receive from The Lord comes during difficult times. He uses His rod to bring correction and His staff to pull us in line because He wants what's best for us.

Hebrews 12:5-11(KJV) - And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons: "My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; 6 For whom the Lord loves He chastens, And scourges every son whom He receives." 7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? 8 But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons. 9 Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live? 10 For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness. 11 Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

If God is chastening you right now it means you're His child and that's good news. Don't complain. Learn whatever lessons you are being taught and grow from them. We'll continue from here tomorrow.

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