05 May Surviving COVID-19 – When the Lord is Your Shepherd Part 2
Green Pastures and Still Waters
“He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, 3 he refreshes my soul.” Psalm 23:2-3a
One of the greatest needs for sheep is green pasture and waters, and that is why one of the most significant responsibilities of a shepherd is to constantly find a place of green pasture and adequate streams of water for the sheep.
As I pondered today’s verse, one phrase stood out: ‘makes me.’ The modern understanding of the word seems to imply being compelled, of being in a situation or circumstance where we must do it. We have no choice, no option, and no way to resist should we wish to. ‘Makes me’ is, in this context, essentially ‘makes it possible for me’ or ‘provides what I need to enable me.’ Often we don’t have what it takes to make the decision that is right for us; that is why the Bible says, “God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.” (Philippians 2:13 NLT)
Green pastures refer to food, and water refers to drink – the two essential components without which our bodies could not survive for any significant length of time. We need proper, healthy nourishment, and we need to maintain a constant level of hydration. These are fundamental to life, and occur in every single living organism, be they too small for the human eye or the massive, towering trees, or everything else in between. Without both, life would not be possible. When we make the Lord our shepherd, he ensures our spirit, soul, and body are adequately fed, and our soul is refreshed.
It is not every pasture that is good for us; it is not every grass that looks greener on the other side that is good for us. There is some pasture full of poisons, and there a some full of wolves, that is why we should trust the Lord. Also, it is not every stream of water and is fit for the sheep. A good shepherd would never lead his sheep to a rapidly flowing river. It would be too dangerous and loud, causing the sheep to be frightened. God doesn’t want this for us. He longs to give us peace, rest, and repose, so He takes us to where the water is pure, clear, and almost motionless so we can refresh ourselves in Him. It’s a place where we can slow down, be quiet and still with Him, and experience His deep, pure love intimately. His invitation to drink of His peace is found in Isaiah 55:1, which says, “Everyone who thirsts, come to the waters.”
When you make the Lord your shepherd, He enables you to lie down in green pastures where you are fed. He leads you beside quiet waters, where your soul is refreshed. I pray that you will recognize the leading of the Lord and have faith to trust and follow Him this season.
May God bless you and remember to Stay CALM, SAFE, CLEAN, and SANCTIFIED.
Pastor Jide Lawore
Lead Pastor, Agape House of Worship