He restores my soul... You prepare a feast for me in the presence of my enemies. You honour me by anointing my head with oil. (Psalm 23)
Psalm 23 is perhaps the best known and the best loved psalm in the Bible. It is only 6 verses long - yet whole books have been written on the truths contained in these short verses. In the times in which we are living, many of us have found this psalm speaking to us again and again, bringing peace, comfort and reassurance.
I want to highlight just one or two points from the verses quoted above.
He restores my soul
How often has He done that for you over these past days? Days of anxiety, or perhaps simply days of weariness and emptiness..... but when we turn our eyes to the Shepherd there comes comfort and peace as we drink in the quiet strength that comes from Him and find that we live again. Take time to be with Him, to draw from Him what you need .... and you will have strength for the next stage of your journey.
You prepare a feast for me in the presence of my enemies
I love the way this psalm moves from speaking ABOUT the Shepherd to speaking TO the Shepherd. As soon as David speaks about God He is not only thinking about Him but he is drawing near to Him and very quickly begins to speak directly to Him. Surely this is the intimacy that God wants to draw all of us into. David has stopped thinking about his weariness and about his enemies and his focus is now on the feast that God has provided! What a difference it makes when we don’t just tell God about our troubles and our needs but we let Him feed our souls. The enemies may not disappear but we have the strength we need to face them.
You honour me by anointing my head with oil
Oil speaks of the Holy Spirit. He is the Comforter and the One who takes of the things that belong to Christ and reveals them to us. As we let Him draw near, He takes us to Jesus and we find the truth that is the first verse of this psalm.
The Lord is my Shepherd... I have all that I need
May we all find, increasingly, that place of rest, restoration and hope for the future that is there when we have been with Jesus.
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