he restores my soul. He guides me along right paths for the sake of his name. Psalms 23:3 NABRE
This psalm is likely one of the best known of all the psalms. It is a psalm that proclaims the nearness of God, it is a psalm of contentment and life, not suffering and death, it is a psalm looking forward to the Lord’s table with confidence. The psalm becomes an even more beautiful prayer, taking on full meaning after Jesus proclaims; “I am the good shepherd. A good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” (John 10:11) We also see Jesus prepare the Eucharistic table for us, guiding us to reach the green pastures of His Kingdom, that is, happiness to full. It is built around two metaphors; the Lord is shepherd and the Lord as host. In ancient times and in the Hebrew Scriptures the shepherd was used as a metaphor for the king and for God, as protector and judge of His people. This prayer is special because it makes a personal note, the Lord is my shepherd, He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me, He restores my soul, He guides me, all for the sake of His name. It is a beautiful prayer that is a guide for each of us, it describes God’s relationship with each of us who seek righteousness, holiness, inviting us to sit at a table of anointing, receiving overflowing blessing. The prayer imbues a sense of security we can feel from God, allowing us to address God directly, accepting protection, accepting God’s authority.
Jesus’ description as the Good Shepherd allows us to see this psalm in light of our belief of Jesus. We can attach all of Jesus’ servanthood and love to this psalm and feel like we are receiving a divine hug, eternally. Be like your shepherd, seek your protection in Him.
Have you prayed this prayer? Do you see your shepherd protecting you?We can attach all of Jesus' servanthood and love to Psalm Twenty-Three as our shepherd and feel like we are receiving a divine hug, eternally. Click To Tweet
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