Verse 2-3 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.
We start our discussion about rest with the topic of spiritual rest. The 23rd Psalm comes from David seeing how God has worked in his life and painting the picture in images that David knew well, shepherding. David had much experience with sheep and being a shepherd.
David starts out with the most vital piece of information that will bring us to rest – “The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.” We can rest in the fact that the Lord is in full control and He provides our every need. David would have known what a bit of work it is to care for the needs of many sheep and so knew what a feat it was for the Lord to care for all of His people’s needs.
Next David turns his attention the rest that the Lord brings. Green pastures will bring nourishment and open roaming. In the open fields there is less chance for a predator to sneak up on the shepherd and his flock. Of course we know that nothing can sneak up in our life without the Lord knowing they are there but that would have been a comfort for David knowing that God could see all that was going on around him. As David found himself hunted by the king and then other enemies in his future he could hold to the fact that God could see all around him and wouldn’t be surprised by an attack.
This image of quiet waters is calming for most. Quiet waters are important for sheep as they are easily startled and they could also fall victim to a swift current. The quiet trickle sound of soft waters are calming, so much so that desktop fountains have brought peace to many an office over the years. The water’s edge is enticing to a lot of people looking for relaxation. And as David knew, we find ourselves refreshed.
Our Good Shepherd brings us into places of peace to nourish us and refresh us but there is more. He leads us along these paths for His name’s sake. That is part of His whole plan of Sabbath. He wants to nourish us, refresh us and to lead us for His name’s sake. When our Sabbaths are lived in His name, following His leading into rest, we find nourishment and refreshment.
Making It Personal
Do you have a place, or type of place, that brings you to a place of rest spiritually? What about that place helps you find spiritual rest? What do you do in that place that makes it a spiritual rest?
Making It Personal Kids
Do you have a place that helps you think about God? Do you talk to God when you are in that place? How does Jesus make you feel when you are there?
Father, thank You for bringing us to places of seeing who You are in our lives and thank You for being our Shepherd, leading us to Sabbath rest. In Jesus’ name, amen.