DAILY WORD 5/26/20

4. Yea, though I walk through 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.

Psalm 23:4 KJV

Today’s passage is probably one of the most well-known portions of one of the most well-known Scriptures in the Bible.

As we confront the fear and death associated with the Coronavirus and many of the headline catching events topping the news of late this particular passage begins to take on new and more prevalent meaning.

I am singling out this one Verse in order to focus on it and the deeper connotations contained within it. I will try to be brief but I think this is important, especially for the times in which we find ourselves.

Throughout this life and in our walk with Christ, as we try to Honor God with our words, deeds, and attitudes, we will often find ourselves in situations that feel like we are facing death.

It may be actual mortality that it threatened or it may be the death of a dream, a relationship, or an opportunity. Even when it is not physical death that we are facing, it can still feel like life is ending as we are going through these situations.

But with God at our sides and the Perspective that His Wisdom affords us we can often ward off the feelings of anguish that so often accompany the termination of the things we love.

However, it cannot be overlooked that there is an element of Discipline attached to the potential comfort contained within this Verse. It says, “Thy Rod and Thy Staff they Comfort me.”

That implies that there may be some Tough Love applied in order to receive the Fearlessness and Comfort that Proximity to God Grants us.

The reason for this is that a Shepherd from time to time would utilize the staff he carried to prod or maneuver his sheep in the direction he desired them to go.

This might have been in order to guide them away from potential danger or to lead them to better and lusher grazing opportunities. Either way there may be some slight discomfort applied in order to ensure the best for the flock.

Then there are the times when a particular sheep is rebellious and headstrong and continues to run off. This would endanger the entire flock because the Shepherd would have to leave the bulk of the obedient sheep to find that one missing lamb.

In times like this, when the Shepherd’s continued discipline is ignored, he might find the need to break the leg of that wayward lamb to keep them nearby and then carry them when it was time to move on to better grazing lands.

This is what God may be to us as we walk with Him. A Good Shepherd is not just a Passive Watcher but an Active Participant in the safe-keeping of the flock.

That may mean Discipline and we all know Discipline is rarely pleasant, especially when it comes from even a Loving and Tender God.

Keep this in mind as you face your next dark valley. The Guidance of God may not always be pleasant but it is what is required to keep you from the potential death that may lurk around the next unseen corner.

He is not being mean or heartless when you experience the discomfort that comes with His Guidance. As a matter of fact, it is just the opposite. He is being the Consumate Good Shepherd because only those who Love us Provide us with Discipline.

Have a Terrific Tuesday, FB, and Stay Safe out there!

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Chris Reid

A lifelong poet and lyricist, and aspiring novelist, who’s taken to heart the old adage, “Only what you do for Christ shall last.”