The beautiful thing about hiding God’s word in your heart and mind is that it seeps into the little mundane moments of a day and transforms it. Here’s a scripture you probably already know:
“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters. He restores my soul; He guides me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I 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 have anointed my head with oil; My cup overflows. Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” Psalm 23, a Psalm of David.
I’ve been praying this psalm, whispering it actually, all week as I prayed for people trapped in the conflict in Afghanistan. I’ve prayed it for the families of the 13 U.S. service members killed in the Kabul attack—25, 23, 22’s, and five twenty-year old killed evacuating civilians because our government left all our military gear and withdrew troops before civilians. God help them, guide them, comfort them as they walk through the valley of the shadow of death. It is such a tender psalm, especially knowing that David, the author, had seen so much trouble and heartache in his life.
I was hiking this week with my dog, Sophie. We went up to Pioneer Cabin outside of Ketchum, Idaho. What a beautiful climb through the trees and wildflowers, up 3000 ft vertical over a seven-mile hike. Several times we crossed over or next to streams and each time I stopped so Sophie could drink. But it’s funny with a little dog, you have to choose a bend in the stream where the water is not rushing rapidly. If the water is too fast, she’s afraid and won’t drink, even though she is thirsty. While I was carefully bringing her to the right sections of water, God’s word came bubbling up in my mind: He leads me beside quiet waters. Turns out that sheep are similar with little dogs in that they need still water to drink. And maybe people need a safe and quiet place to be refreshed as well. That’s why the Lord is our shepherd. He carefully and tenderly leads us to rest and replenishment. When we are exhausted by a wicked and unjust world, God thoughtfully leads us into a place of peace. When life is wearing us down we can remember that He prepares a table before us in the presence of our enemies.
How has God brought you to quiet waters recently? Starting the day praying Psalm 23 out loud can be our choice to center our lives peacefully in His word. Blessings to you this week my friends. Be sure to sign up for my blog to hit your email rather than social media