Psalm 23 (NIVUK)
1 The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
3 he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
for his name’s sake.
4 Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord
We couldn’t go through a week looking at the biblical symbolism of ‘the shepherd’ without Psalm 23 (we have missed Jesus’ announcement that he is the Good Shepherd, but I suspect you’ve had that in mind as you’ve read these passages that lay behind Jesus’ thinking). I wondered if I could quote just a bit from it, but cutting any section seemed to mean a bit of what it means that God is our shepherd was lost. Rather than offer my reflections, today I want to suggest that you prayerfully read it again and asking God to speak to you as you do so.