Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:3-4 NIV
Image by Elsemargriet from Pixabay
David spent the greater part of his early years as a shepherd, tending his father’s sheep. Most of us are very familiar with and can probably quote Psalm 23. In verse 3, David wrote: “He maketh me to lie down in green pastures.” I don’t know a lot about sheep but in Phillip Keller’s Book, A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23, he gives us four requirements that a sheep must have before it will lie down:
- Freedom from fear.
- Freedom of friction from others of their kind
- Freedom from pests and parasites
- Freedom from hunger.
When these conditions are met, the sheep feel they are in a safe pasture, and they can lie down and rest. They have perfect confidence that the shepherd is watching over them and will protect them from danger and harm. As children of the Lord Jesus Christ, who is our Shepherd, we can feel safe and secure as we rest upon His promises.
- No fear – I John 4:18 “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.”
- Unity with our brothers and sisters – I John 4:10-11 “Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.”
- Comfort and healing – II Corinthians 1:3-4 “Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation,”
- Freedom from hunger – Matthew 5:6 “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.”
The Shepherd has provided safe pastures for us, but we make a choice whether or not to rest in them. When we place our complete trust in His Word and His promises, we rise above all fear and lean on Him. We find our delight in thinking about His nature and His works, give Him leadership in our life choices, and rely on Him to supply all our needs. We rest in the safe pasture He has provided.
Perhaps you are facing some fears in your life today. Why not cast them aside and trust that the Lord Jesus has a safe pasture for you to rest in?
Philippians 4:6-7 “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
Prayer: Jesus, we are so thankful that you are our Good Shepherd, that you know each of us by name, and that you have a plan and purpose for our lives. Help us to trust you and enjoy the safe pasture you have provided for us.
Devotion by Anne Johnston