As we have been reminded these last many months, life has seasons of uncertainty that may at time feel hopeless. Amended schedules and cancellations, sickness and loss, discord and division surround us. But God isn’t uncertain. Grace never changes. Faith nurtures trust. Trust cultivates reconciliation. And hope abounds. God's leadership is unfailing even – especially – when everything else feels too complicated to trust. One of my favorite passages for finding solid footing is Psalm 23. It shows up often in times of loss, but it is speaks a profound word of comfort in any time of discomfort...which can be just about anytime!
It begins The Lord is my shepherd.
This says so much in just five short, simple words. The Lord: one true sovereign God. Is: currently, always has been, always will be. My: it’s a personal relationship – one you can have with God. Shepherd: leader, protector, provider.
I shall not want. God can be trusted to provide. God never falls short. It isn’t be what we expect or want or hope for, but we always receive sufficient provision, according to God's unlimited riches, not our finite resources.
He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. God provides refreshment and rest in troubled times. God does this for God's glory, not ours. We were created to have a relationship with and worship God.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. We don’t have to live in fear if we have a shepherd we trust. We may have great concerns and/or real regrets. That’s normal. That’s human. But we don’t need to fear.
For you are with me. God is with you today, whatever you’re facing.
The remaining verses continue to comfort, promise and reassure. I encourage you to grab a Bible, or Google Psalm 23. Spend a few minutes reading or re-reading these beautiful words of praise, thanksgiving, and peace. They are for you: yesterday, today, and tomorrow.
The times may feel uncertain, but our God is constant. Hope abounds.
Peace and grace,
aka "The Vicar"