Sunday, February 26, 2012

Psalm 23 [and then some]: The Legit Shepherd.

You know that thing that happens when you read a verse or passage for the however-many-nth-time and you STILL go, "Whoa!" Well, I had one of those moments again. I love them because it shows that God is God of great depth, and the revelation of His word does deep work in our souls.

I was going through a chapter in a book I'm reading called The Good and Beautiful God--specically a chapter on God's generosity. The soul training exercise for that chapter was to meditate on Psalm 23 throughout the course of the week. As I started, I would just recite it as is. A few days went by, and then my meditations on the chapter became a bit fuller--a bit weightier.

Here's what a I got a few days in--my extra somethin' somethin's are in the [ ]'s.

The Lord is my SHEPHERD, I shall not want [because He gives me everything I need];
He makes me lie down in green pastures [because he wants me to REST]
& leads me beside still waters [because He wants me to know His PEACE].
He restores my soul [because only He can do that work in me].
He leads me in the right paths for His name's sake [and because He's a righteous God and cares about my character and my heart].
Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I fear no evil for You [PERFECT LOVE] are with me;
Your rod and your staff comfort me [because I know that you discipline and guide me out of LOVE]/
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies [because You are greater than them and you fight my battles].
You anoint my head with oil [because you KNOW who I am and know my worth].
My cup overflows [because you are a GENEROUS God].
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life [because you watch over me and are after my good],
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever [because You desire a relationship of MUTUAL delight with me].

The whole passage is powerful, but this time around--the line that hit me the hardest was, "I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever [because You desire a relationship of MUTUAL delight with me"].
He, the God of the universe, delights in me and is utterly delighted when I delight in Him. If that isn't an overwhelming, hard-to-wrap-your-head-around thought, I'm not sure what is. Amazing, I tell you. His love his amazing. The deeper realization that I know a good and beautiful God is a reminder that I'm forever in a good and beautiful relationship. Talk about generous, right?

P.s. If you have some time, I really recommend the book I'm going through. The main premise of the book is to have us replace the false narratives we live by with Jesus' narratives--replacing our wrong-thinking with freeing truth. The book's even greater if you have some friends you can read through it with.

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