Psalms 23: 4-6 NRSV
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. 5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. 6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
This passage is part of a Psalm by King David singing his praises to GOD for the certainty of God’s protection. The first part of this particular Psalm talks about his relationship with GOD and how God is a shepherd in his life. The second part, the above passage, talks about David’s assertion that GOD’s presence and guidance bring comfort. It also states that God is a gracious host who sustains life.
Fast forward to the time of Jesus hanging on the cross, walking through his own valley. Jesus knows that GOD is with Him since it was GOD who sent Jesus to be the savior for mankind. It appears that Jesus’ relationship GOD is like David’s years earlier. Jesus is facing death and he accepts it and does not fear it as he knows that he was born into the human world with this purpose. We also know that Jesus is being obedient to GOD’s shepherding. We know that GOD loves his Son in whom he is well pleased.
I believe it is the same in our life with our peaks and dark valleys. When God is our shepherd, he is protecting and guiding us which should bring us comfort. It also calls for our obedience to his shepherding. Just like Jesus on the cross it was GOD’s presence and guidance that brought Him comfort as he was obedient to his calling and died on the cross.
God has prepared a place for us just as he did for Jesus. He is a gracious host in preparing us a place for eternal life. God is promising goodness and mercy though our obedience to His shepherding while we are alive and we will live eternally with GOD and Jesus.
Prayer: Dear God, I stand with your promise that you are with me in times of trouble and darkness. Help me to be obedient to your shepherding. I am comforted with your presence and guidance in my life. Help me to live a GOD-centered life. Amen.