The LORD is my shepherd (1)

Psalm 23

A Psalm of David.

1 The LORD is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
3 He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.

4 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.

5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the LORD
Forever.

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. A shepherd provides for his sheeps. If The Lord is my shepherd, and I am His sheep, I shall lack nothing. He provides everything I need so that I shall never lack anything. The Lord is the maker of heaven and earth. He is the Lord of the universe. The universe is His. If God, who owns the universe, is my shepherd, shall I lack; shall I want? No. I shall want nothing, for I lack nothing. From Him I receive all that I need.

He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. The Lord satisfies my physical needs. I do not need to seek fulfilment for my needs. He provides that for me. In fact, I may not be able to fulfil my needs–for I may not even know what my needs are–but He fulfil those for me. He knows what I need, and He knows how to provide those for me. I shall desire fulfilment in no other place, for in Him I am satisfied, for He gives what is best for me.

He restores my soul; The Lord satisfies my spiritual needs. Not only does He fulfil my physical needs, He refreshes my soul as well. If my soul is refreshed by Him, why shall I seek refreshment from other sources? The Lord and the Lord alone satisfies my spiritual needs. Apart from Him I shall never find true satisfaction. My soul is restless, until it rests in Him, for He made me for Himself. I shall never savour true enjoyment apart from His presence.

He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.The Lord leads me in the right path, for He is right and true. With Him I am safe and secure, and my steps are sure, for He knows which the right way is and He leads me there. I am not alone, for He is with me. He holds my hand. He knows where the path leads me to and He leads me there. He does not lead me astray, for He is true. He faithfully leads me and never leaves me, for He is a faithful God. The Lord does all these for His name sake. He provides for, restores, and leads me because of Himself, not because of me. What I want may not be what I really need, but God is the one who knows what I need. What I want may cause me harm, but what He gives can only bring me good. Therefore what a comfort it is to know that God provides for, restores, and lead me not because of me, but because of Himself. What a comfort it is to know that His providence stands on His own sovereignty, for only then can I be assured that all my life is solely under His care, and nothing–not even myself–can hinder God to give what is best for me.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death. There may be moments when I have to walk through the valley of the shadow of death, but knowing that God holds my hand, I know that even in the valley of darkness, I am in the right path. The right way is not always without shadow. The right way is not always without sorrow and sadness.

I will fear no evil; for You are with me. Indeed, eventhough I must walk through deep shadow, eventhough I must face evil and danger, I am not scared, for The Lord is with me. In difficult times, I know His hand is holding me and leading me. He is faithful. He never leaves me. He may lead me through darkness, but He leads me in the right path. I know that it is the right way, for He is there.

to be continued…

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