A Church with a Heart for our Community

June 26th Friday

Greetings in the name of “the Glory of the Lord” (Isaiah 40:5), Jesus Christ – THE Crucified and Risen Saviour!  “Oh. what a beautiful morning-Oh what a beautiful day-I’ve got a wonderful feeling-That everything’s going my way!” … now that you have cleared the cobwebs and started to smile … sing it again! It is really good therapy! I trust that you have had a grand week and are looking forward to the weekend—finishing off the month of June. Today I will be praying for you, asking God to prepare you for your appointment with Him in times of corporate worship and fellowship with His family.

This morning I woke up thinking – I really need some help with the day…the weekend. I whispered a quiet…”Help me, Jesus!” and waited a moment or two and…no response. So I got up and went through the morning routine and rituals, eventually turning to the computer to check emails. Now, first of all, you need to know that I put a new image on my desktop of – “sheep” – and it seems like they are looking right at me. This one sheep in particular looks at me and I can hear him/her saying: “I am not concerned about my day. I have a shepherd looking after the details.” – “Lucky you!” says I. I open up my email page to read a devotional about the 23rd Psalm. So, I return to the desktop page and I look at that sheep and say: “I’ve got a shepherd too! “The Lord’s my shepherd!” I was feeling quite in control until that sheep looked at me and said:“You are not behaving like you really believe it! Are you sure, or is that simply something you say?” “Ah!”, says I, “what does this sheep know?”

Truth be told, the 23rd Psalm is often only referenced and read at funerals, and the simple, but powerful teachings have lost their edge. This old familiar Psalm is, I believe, to be a daily anchor point reminding me that I am taking God’s presence into my daily life of wants and needs and fears and concerns and doubts and weariness and hopes and joys and dreams. I suppose that if I could grasp and live in that reality there would be, as Dallas Willard said, “a casual confidence” manifested in my demeanour. I am reminded of a story about two men, one an older uneducated farmer and the other man – younger, educated and well-spoken. Each man recited the 23rd Psalm before a gathering of people. The younger man talked with eloquence, good diction, and poise that reflected his education and training. The older man talked softly, stumbling over the words and phrases – betraying his lack of education. The people applauded the younger man while responding to the older man with a hush. The younger man broke the silence: “I know the Psalm and how to read it. My friend knows the shepherd and how to live with him.” 

I think that ‘sheep’ was right to challenge me…if an image of a sheep on a computer desktop is able to do so. Maybe I need to open my Bible to that old familiar Psalm and read it slowly and methodically declare: The Lord is my shepherd – TODAY…I shall not want – TODAY … He maketh me to lie down in green pastures – TODAY … He restoreth my soul – TODAY …Why don’t you join me? Find your Bible, open to the 23rd Psalm…or from memory (I know that some of you can do this) and insert “TODAY” with each phrase.

Have a great weekend…be blessed!