Scripture: Psalm 23 The Lord is My Shepherd
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
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.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.
As we become closer to God through our walk each day, several things happen.
First, our inner being begins to be at peace. As we refocus and rebuild, we begin to be aware that we are not whipped about by the waves of life’s storms because we have confidence that Jesus is walking with us and God is in control. We are confident that God’s plan is good and that we are under the umbrella of His protection.
Second, when we remember that God loves us; God forgives us and His grace is sufficient, we realize how freeing it can be to live focused on loving others free from the guilt and condemnation of sin. The more we refocus on God and rebuild the areas in our lives that are lacking, the more we realize the simplicity of doing what is good and what is right with the only purpose being to bring Glory to God.
Third, when we recognize that our purpose is to bring God glory and God’s purpose for us is to be obedient to Him and to keep our eyes focused on Him. Doing this through the process of life we bring God glory and we can be confident that when it is God’s time to bring us home, He will meet us with the greeting, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
None of this means that we will be free from challenges, heartache and disasters. What it does mean is that God has equipped us to face them by sending His Son, Jesus Christ, His Spirit and His Word to guide us through every moment of life. His Plan for us is in life’s process. Life’s coincidences are God’s perfect timing.
Sometimes we get a peek at His Glory as we walk in His Will and in His Way. Those are the mountaintop experiences we hear others talk about. They bring us hope and cement our faith. But, the majority of our time is spent in the valley where life happens. If we had the mountaintop experiences all the time, I suspect we would retreat into the emotion and wonder of what He has waiting for us instead of living each moment in the light of eternity. It is in the valley, where we face what needs to be overcome, that the light overtakes the darkness and we are one with God.
My prayer for us this week, is that we keep our eyes focused on Jesus; we turn away from that which we know needs to be left behind and we look for the “coincidences” that happen to remind us that God is in control and His timing is perfect.