Searching His Word, Seeking His Heart
We continue with thoughts from the 23rd Psalm. (Restore My Soul) Just like David the shepherd, our good shepherd leads us in the right path, the path that guides us into right living.
But like sheep, we are prone to go astray and have to be set back on the right path.
He guides me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Psalm 23:3
When we’re obedient enough to follow His leading, we’re able to serve and bring honor to God “for His name’s sake.”
At times, shepherds have to lead the sheep through narrow passage ways, walking one or two abreast lest they fall off the path to their death. The shepherd must use his staff to guide them into a line.
By the same token, when the sheep are in a wide grazing area, the shepherd uses his staff to draw in a sheep who is headed toward bramble bushes or a ravine. If a sheep falls into a ravine, the shepherd turns his staff upside down to use the crook end around the sheep’s belly and pull him up out of the ravine to safety.
The sheep can also rest assured that if wild animals try to invade, the shepherd will protect them by using the rod end of his staff to fight off offenders.
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. Psalm 23:4
I read one shepherd’s account of how poisonous weeds grew up in certain areas. He would get up early in the morning to go across the pasture and pull up the poisonous weeds, laying them up on a rock to dry, out of the way of the sheep. Later, as the sheep roused from their sleep, they could graze in the very presence of these deadly weeds—unharmed.
You prepare a way for me in the presence of my enemies. Psalm 23 :5
How thorough and lovingly a shepherd cares for his sheep, just like our good shepherd cares for us.
This week has been trying for me with mother in the hospital for the fourth time in two and a half years. She went from laughing and talking to sleeping day and night, eating only small bits of food with her eyes closed as I fed her. She could barely get a word or two out.
Again, I went through the grueling decision of where to place her for rehab. I cried out to God to help me trust Him to guide just as the shepherd guides his sheep. One place on my list was the best one in town, but hard to find an opening. The next day He opened a bed at this facility. Praise His name! If she should need to go into long term care, she can stay there in the same room. I’m so relieved.
~ Joyce ~