31 Days: He lets me rest in green meadows


The LORD is my shepherd; I have all I need.
He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams.
He renews my strength.

He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name.
Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid,
for you are close beside me.
Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.
You prepare a feast in the presence of my enemies.
You honor me by anointing my head with oil.
My cup overflows with blessings.
Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life,
and I will live in the house of the LORD forever.

Psalm 23

Although perhaps heard most often in funerals, Psalm 23 is a wonderful picture of the Lord’s care for us who belong to him, not just in crisis but in the everyday moments of our lives. 

He meets every need. “He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength.” Isn’t it interesting how rest is listed first? Not, “he puts a roof over my head” or “he gives me meaningful work to do.” Even protection, comfort and blessings come later.  

Other translations have “he makes me lie down in green pastures.” Rest is not a reward for a job well done. It is part of his provision for our well-being. He doesn’t force it on us, but if we will follow him then rest is ours to enjoy in his presence.

The Rhythm of Rest
This is Day 17 of The Rhythm of Rest series (Write 31 Days challenge).

31 Days: Listen and Follow

Wetlands Path

“I tell you the truth, anyone who sneaks over the wall of a sheepfold, rather than going through the gate, must surely be a thief and a robber! But the one who enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognise a stranger’s voice.

My sheep listen to my voice; I know them and they follow me.”

John 10:1-5, 27

If we don’t listen, how will we recognise the voice of our Shepherd? How will we know who to follow?

31 Days to ListenThis is Day 16 of the series 31 Days to Listen.

Listening to the Shepherd

Listening to the Shepherd

“I am the good shepherd; I know my own sheep, and they know me, just as my Father knows me and I know the Father. So I sacrifice my life for the sheep. I have other sheep, too, that are not in this sheepfold. I must bring them also. They will listen to my voice, and there will be one flock with one shepherd.”

John 10:14-16

“The first duty of love is to listen.”

Paul Tillich

Image sourced here.