"For I know the plans I have for you", declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11 NIV

Monday, February 7, 2011

Psalm 23

“Even in the Valley God is Good”.   There is a lovely young lady in our Church (Robin O.) who occasionally sings that song.  I always think of Psalm 23.
God has given me 2-3 wonderful glimpses of Psalm 23, but I woke up early one morning and it just kept going over and over in my mind about being in “the valley.” 
How can our mind wrap around such a statement as God being good even in the midst of the valley.  When I think of being in the valley, I think of turmoil and circumstances of life gone wrong.  Maybe you’ve been out of a job for a while, the bank is calling your mortgage is payments behind, the car is payments behind.  You went to the doctor and a small lump or an unusual ache in your body turns out to be cancer. Our children’s lives are in a mess.  Or worse, someone you love has just died, How in the world can we lift our hands to the Lord and say, “Even in the valley, God is good?’
In Psalm 23, David likens us to sheep in the flock of the Great Shepard.  Verse 1, “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want”, God is already on the way with our answers.  Verse 2, “He maketh me to lie down in green pastures, He leadeth me beside the still waters, Verse 3, “He restores my soul. He leads me in the path of righteousness for His namesake”  Everything may seem to be wrong with no end in sight but God is always there just a call away just say “Jesus.
The Good Shepherd takes his sheep in to the lush green pastures, where they can be fed and refreshed, We must refresh ourselves on the Word of God, that is what feeds our mind and our soul. He leadeth me beside the still waters, not the stagnant water covered in slime and debris, not the rushing troubled waters, but the slow moving calm quiet waters, where we drink to our fill.  When we fill our mind and heart on the Word and drink of His Holy Spirit we become refreshed and renewed.
Just let your imagination take hold.  Can’t you picture the green pastures, the grass is tall and lush and green, it smells so good and clean the sun has warmed it.  There are wild flowers growing abundantly.  Just take a moment to pick a handful of wild flowers, hold them up to your face, and feel the loveliness and beauty of them.  Kneel down in the green grass and drink from the refreshing clean water.  Now lie back and let the grass envelope you like a cocoon.  You begin to get drowsy, the Holy Spirit is refreshing your spirit with the Love of God  you are cocooned in His love and grace. Let His Spirit speak to your mind and heart about how much He loves you, begin to praise Him, not because of the valley, but because of the fact that when this trial is over you will come forth as pure gold and God will in the end receive the Honor and Glory because you have been faithful even in the hardest time of your life.
Verse 4, “Yea thou I walk thru the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil, for thou art with me, thy rod and thy staff they comfort me."   As a shepherd gently uses his rod to lead his sheep and keep them on the right path, the sheep know that the shepherd will keep them safe even thou they may be walking in the valley where wild animals abound and death maybe close at hand.  So we can rest assured that our Shepherd will lead us thru this valley and keep us safe until we have safely crossed thru.
Verse 5, “ Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies, thou anointeth my head with oil, my cup runneth over.” Our enemy is satan and even he seems to be running rampant in your life always know that when we praise and worship our Shepherd, our Savior Jesus Christ, that he will prepare a table of spiritual meat and drink right before satan’s eyes and there is nothing that satan can do but leave us .
Verse 6, “Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”   No one knows how long their life will be.  For some, life is but a short time, while others live to a ripe old age.  Maybe for some ~His best for us is to take us home to be with Him, and that is the ultimate leaving of the valley, and I truly believe that Jesus is coming back in the air for his people--and could be just any second, or any day, we will hear the trumpet sound.  Those that are asleep in Jesus will rise first to meet Him in the air and those that are alive on this earth will join them in the air and so will we ever be with the Lord, forever without end. Never to face another valley.
If you are in a valley today, whether spiritual, emotional, physical, know that Jesus is the Good Shepherd, ready to guide and lead you through this valley into the paths of His Blessings.  He will restore you.
In Christ Love,

Copyright 2011 Gloria B. Powell. All rights reserved.
Photo used by permission of Angie Knight-All rights reserved.


Angie Knight said...

Gloria--YOUR heart for Jesus blesses me so much!

I love you dearly and am so very thankful HE aligned our paths to walk together!

Denise said...

You truly bless.