This week, my good friend Andy Broad is bringing us the Monday Minute. He is the Executive Pastor at Kings Church and has a heart for people to see the love of God. I pray his Monday thought will help you as you begin your week.
The 23rd Psalm has been speaking to me profoundly in this season marked by uncertainty, underlying anxiety, and fear.
We’ve all experienced those deep-seated emotions, wrestled with our own limited ability to rectify our circumstances, and struggled to keep our proverbial train on the tracks.
The 23rd Psalm reminds us, and has certainly been reminding me, that our confidence and strength is not drawn from what we can see happening around us, but rather how God has promised He would be present with us in those seasons and circumstances.
Here’s what the Lord has been speaking over me for the last few months. Perhaps it will be an encouragement to you today as well.
Contentment - Reliance
"The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing."
God is good, and I can choose to be content. The psalmist is declaring the sovereignty of God, and making a decision to be content. The KJV says “I shall not want.” I will choose to be content.
Comfort - Restoration
"He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake."
God will regularly require something of me. Are you ok with a God who “makes” you do something? A shepherd’s job is to keep his sheep safe, and meet their needs. Thankfully for us, the Good Shepherd never fails us. He refreshes our weary souls.
Courage - Resolve
"Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me."
Evil will be present in our lives, but we need not fear it. We don’t LIVE in the dark valley, we walk THROUGH it. And the Good Shepherd is WITH us. He sees beyond the shadows when we cannot.
Correction - Realignment
"Your rod and your staff, they comfort me."
When I stray from the path, I need to rely on the Shepherd to correct me. He sees what I cannot, and I can trust his correction. Uncomfortable as it may be, it’s always what’s best for me in the grand scheme.
Confidence - Reassurance
"You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows."
The Lord prepares a rich bounty for me, even in battle. Have you been missing out on the banquet right in front of you because you’re too distracted by the noise of the battle raging around you? If God is for you, who can be against you? Pull up a chair, and be reassured that He fights on your behalf.
Covenant - Revelation
"Surely your goodness and love (mercy) will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”
The third verse of Amazing Grace goes like this, “The Lord has promised good to me, His word my hope secures.”
God has promised (the covenant) His goodness to us. If I don’t sense it in this life, I’ll certainly be acutely aware of it in the next. Our ultimate home is in the house of the Lord. There we will have no more questions, no confusion, and no uncertainty.
When I live my life from THIS perspective (the revelation), peace begins to overwhelm my uncertainty. Lord help me remain aware of your promise, even when the darkness clouds my vision. My hope is secure!
The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
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 overflows.
Surely your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord
forever. (Psalm 23:1-6)