rest | psalm 23

from the rest | psalm 23 reading plan

BY Amanda Bible Williams

Before we dive into the intro of A Fresh Start tomorrow, let’s spend another day dwelling on the promise of rest from the Lord.

Today we’ll read Psalm 23, perhaps the most familiar of all Psalms:

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters
He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
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 goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
forever.

Psalm 23

Aaaand, deep breath.

It’s beautiful, isn’t it?

Could I ask you to do something? Could you read it once more, this time a little more slowly? Notice the various images of peace and rest, and allow them to sink in. Meditate on the words awhile.

.   .   .

Rest. Peace. Stillness. Provision. Guidance. Comfort. Restoration. Assurance. Confidence. Security. Blessing. Anointing. Belonging.

We are not promised freedom from trouble, but we are promised comfort and care, a shepherd with a watchful, compassionate eye. We are not promised victory over all our foes, but we are promised a place at the table, a place of belonging, the favor of the King. We are not promised an easy path, but we are promised rest and refreshment, goodness and mercy for each leg of the journey.

Let’s sit in this chapter today. Let’s lie down at the Good Shepherd’s feet and rest awhile, knowing He has never – not for one moment  – stopped watching over us.

Psalm 23

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We’ll see you here tomorrow for the introduction to our next plan – A Fresh Start!

Post Comments (29)

29 thoughts on "rest | psalm 23"

  1. Pat M says:

    Just a short note to say how blessed I am to have found this website.
    I will be back tomorrow for more blessing.

  2. larahannah says:

    ‘Surely goodness & mercy will follow me all the day of my life’
    I remember a pastor of mine once saying those words ‘follow me’ was translated to mean ‘chase me down’ ‘Pursue me’. An action verb taking place on Gods part. His goodness will chase me down all the days of my life!

    I have to ask myself. Do I believe that? Do I REALLY really believe that? Or do I look at others people who are married to gorgeous men of God & have healthy children already at my age & think ‘Gee God has been good to them’ and kinda feel like ‘why hasn’t God been that good to me?’

    I’d be lying if I said I truly believe in my heart Gods goodness is always chasing me down… Especially when I’m walking through those valleys as 2013 was for me.

    But what an unbelievable picture to be reminded of…. In the midst of the darkest & deepest troubles & pain he leads us to still waters…. He comforts us, guides us, places value on us & sets us apart for his purposes amidst the adversaries we face in our lives….

    It reminds me of another Psalm… Possibly my favourite Psalm. Psalm 73. Where Asaph rabbits on & on about how everyone is against him, life is hard etc etc etc… Until.. Vs 16 ‘But when I thought how to understand this,it seemed to me a wearisome task, until I went into the sanctuary of God;then I discerned their end.’

    It’s like when we walk through these valleys… We have these moments of sheer utter clarity… Almost when we are at our breaking point & feel totally hopeless… We see God in all his glory for who he is…. our shepard, our father, who in the midst of hardship takes us by the hand & leads us by still waters & says ‘trust me, give me your yoke, let me carry it & I will give you rest. This is not for nothing, your struggle is not in vain. Trust me I know what I am doing & I’m your daddy who loves you more than you could possibly ever know.’

    Then by the end of Psalm 73 Asaph is able to say
    ‘Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on this earth that I desire be does you. My flesh & my heart my fail but God is the strength of my heart & my portion forever’

    How I want my heart to echo those very words!

    Similarly the end of Psalm 23 concludes with an all consuming faith in Gods all sufficiency
    ‘Surely goodness and mercy shall follow meall the days of my life,and I shall dwell in the house of the Lordforever.’

    Someone once said to me
    ‘When God is all you have left… You realise he is all that you need’

    I think Psalm 23 & 73 both sing loudly of this truth.

    May I never for 2013… The valley that is was for me… But more importantly may I never forget how awesome God is to have pulled me through it & all the while be changing me into the woman he so wants me to become because of it…

    God bless you sisters xx

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