Daily Readings: Exodus 13-14, Psalm 23, Matthew 22
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 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 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
Wow. So good.
Read that entire Psalm again but this time slow down. Let God truly lead you beside quiet waters as you read these beautiful words. Pause after each sentence to really let it sink in.
Psalm 23, for me, perfectly summarizes how I feel in my relationship with God when my heart is focused on him and when my eyes are on heaven and not on the daily moments of strife, worry, stress, frustration, or anger that this world can bring.
When my heart is aligned with God, even when “walking through the valley of the shadow of death” or “in the presence of my enemies”, he guides me. He gives me peace. He comforts me.
I love the imagery of leading me beside quiet waters because there is nothing more relaxing for me in this entire world than being alone with God on the water. There is something inherently peaceful about sitting quietly next to a large body of water and taking it all in. In those moments I am in awe of God’s majesty and all of his creation.
Today, actually choose to go live out Psalm 23. Let God lead you beside quiet waters. Let him make you to lie down in green pastures. The beauty of this Psalm is that David refers to our ability to let God give us this rest even when we are in the midst of trial and turmoil. We do not need to be physically resting and actually sitting alone next to quiet waters to have our souls refreshed. The Holy Spirit is ready and willing each and every day, regardless of what that day brings, to anoint our heads with oil and follow us with love and goodness. He is ready to help us dwell in the house of the Lord.
Today, let him.
Thought to ponder
What is the most peaceful and relaxed I ever feel? If I was writing Psalm 23, what would I replace, “He leads me beside quiet waters” with? That peace is available for you today regardless of what the world brings!