The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth 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 thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever. – Psalm 23
Like sheep, we humans do not know what is good for us. Therefore, without a shepherd, we wander about aimlessly and weary.
It takes the Good Shepherd, our Lord, to give us the rest and comfort that we need. It is his goodness and mercy that guides us and steadies us when we stumble. He leads and comforts us.
We need God to provide green pastures and cool waters for us. The things that we enjoy in this life are from the hand of God. They include our health, strength, our family, our jobs, our wealth our house and cars.
These can be considered green pastures and cool waters of life. For these blessings we are called to give thanks and praise to God for his generosity to us, undeserving sinners.
The comfort of this life is to know that we are in the care of a loving God who knows what we need and who provides for that need. We might not have all the riches and comforts of this life, but then, riches and the comforts of this life are not the most important things in life.
Only the fool relies solely upon the things of this world and neglect the things of God. When we place God first in our lives, he provides us with what we need for substance.
God keeps us in his grace. He told St. Paul, “My grace is sufficient.” Put your trust in God for your sustenance. He will never disappoint you.
That is what the psalmist David did during his life, especially during the most desperate times of his life. Even though he experienced many ups and down in his life, he always relied upon the Lord for deliverance.
As we journey through the maze of life, we wander away from the comfort of the Good Shepherd. The path of righteousness is the path which the saints desire to travel. This is the way home, to God’s kingdom. It is a safe path.
When God leads us, we know that we are on the right path. It is the way to salvation.
During his life as a shepherd, David cared for and protected his flock. When he became a king, he cared for his people. He trusted God to guide and protect him and keep him focused.
I have the assurance, that my Lord, the Good Shepherd is always with me. He provides and comforts me. Even though, in this life I might have my setbacks and my enemies might gloat about it, I shall not fear or worry because the Lord, the Good Shepherd will take care of my needs.
Therefore, I do not have to worry. He provides in abundance, that my cup overflows.
The Good Shepherd brings peace – that peace which is beyond all human understanding. What joy it is to know that at the end of this journey called life, I can look forward to the comfort of the Lord’s house for ever.
That is what the good shepherd does for you and for me. When we come to the end of life’s journey, he brings us safely home. There we will never experience disappointments, fear, sorrow, or pain any longer. Our tears will be dried, and finally, we will live in the presence of the Lord forever. Amen.
• Reverend Samuel M. Boodle, pastor at the Lutheran Church of Nassau, 119 John F. Kennedy Dr can be reached at P.O. Box N 4794, Nassau, Bahamas; or telephone 426-9084; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; website: www.nassaulutheranchurch.org.