My Shepherd, My Friend
Psalm 23:1-4 (TPT) The Lord is my best friend and my shepherd. I always have more than enough. He offers a resting place for me in his luxurious love. His tracks take me to an oasis of peace, the quiet brook of bliss. That’s where he restores and revives my life. He opens before me pathways to God’s pleasure and leads me along in his footsteps of righteousness so that I can bring honor to his name. Lord, even when your path takes me through the valley of deepest darkness, fear will never conquer me, for you already have! You remain close to me and lead me through it all the way. Your authority is my strength and my peace. The comfort of your love takes away my fear. I’ll never be lonely, for you are near.
What is your view of God? Do you see Him as a harsh ruler that is angry with His children? Do you see Him as a loving father that only wants the best for His kids? Maybe you feel like He is just make believe to give people comfort about life after death. The truth is, until you are really desperate for the absolute Truth, your view of who God is will be skewed. You must come to the realization that everything the world has to offer, is temporary, but God is eternal and He made plans and provisions for us eons ago. He is not angry with us, He is patiently waiting for us to come to Him. His goodness and love pursues us every single day - it's up to us to respond and have the relationship with Him that He desires.
I love that this translation says the Lord is my best friend. The word most commonly used for “shepherd” is taken from the root word ra‘ah, which is also the Hebrew word for "a special friend." God is the best friend you could ever have and more. Following a list of rules for religious purposes will never satisfy your spirit, only receiving a drink from the true Living Water will quench what you are thirsty for. Jesus is that Living Water we desire - the drink that leaves us intoxicated by God's love - something the world can never reproduce with its deadly drugs and alcohol.
As we encounter times of darkness surrounding us, we will not be consumed by fear because Jesus has defeated death - the grave could not even hold Him! Through the power of the Holy Spirit He was resurrected and we are now the recipients of His power and authority over all the darkness and evil around us. Death no longer has a sting, we absolutely share in Christ's victory! There is never a need to fear, because the Holy Spirit is near. Draw near to Him today, drink from His living water.
1 Corinthians 15:55-57 (TPT) And when that which is mortal puts on immortality, and what now decays is exchanged for what will never decay, then the Scripture will be fulfilled that says: Death is swallowed up by a triumphant victory! So death, tell me, where is your victory? Tell me death, where is your sting? It is sin that gives death its sting and the law that gives sin its power. But we thank God for giving us the victory as conquerors through our Lord Jesus, the Anointed One.
John 4:14 (TPT) "But if anyone drinks the living water I give them, they will never thirst again and will be forever satisfied! For when you drink the water I give you it becomes a gushing fountain of the Holy Spirit, springing up and flooding you with endless life!”