He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. Psalm 23:3b
Listen: Psalm 23
In the Middle East, the shepherd would have to move the sheep from place to place because food and water were scarce. The shepherd knew the route from one pasture to another and one source of water to another. While the journey might be treacherous, a good shepherd knew the way and would take the sheep on the right path. Without the shepherd, the sheep wouldn’t be able to make it. David’s readers would’ve understood the path here as God’s word. To get to the rest of the pasture, David is saying we have to follow God’s word.
Often we want what the pasture offers, but we don’t want to follow the path to get there. The only way for us to find true contentment, security and restoration of the soul is to follow the teaching of Jesus. But our nature is to follow our own way. Isaiah writes that, “All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own” (Isaiah 63:6b NLT). Jesus picks up on the shepherding language and calls himself the good shepherd (John 10). When we take what Jesus says seriously and apply it to our lives—we can find true contentment, security and restoration for our soul.
IN YOUR CHAIR TIME TODAY
Consider whether you are following Jesus as the Good Shepherd. He’s the one who offers true contentment, security and restoration for our soul. Think about where you have left God’s path. Where have you jettisoned what you know God wants you to do and gone your own way? Confess this to God, thank him for his forgiveness and ask his Spirit to help you follow him in this area.
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