The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
The image of God as a shepherd is expressly amazing. A shepherd stays with his flock and the flock is totally dependent on the shepherd. So that is why this first verse of Psalm 23 is so incredibly powerful. If defines who our shepherd is and a reward for following Him.
This verse has been in my spirit for a few weeks. During this time, I’ve been thinking deeply about the power of God to take care of everything that I face or am in need of. I’ve not been in a season of question, but rather a season of meditation on how much God cares for me and how much He establishes my way. Proverbs 21:29 says that God establishes our way. God’s hand is on everything we do. Above what we can think or even imagine. Establishing our way indicates that God is involved beforehand. Establishing indicates God’s work begins way before we know what it is to do or what it is we face. That kind of shepherding is what I’m talking about.
“I shall not want.” A promise given by God that if I heed the voice of the shepherd, He will guide me to a place that He not only establishes for me, but it will be filled with whatever I need. “The steps of the man are from the Lord, and He establishes him in whose way he delights.” (Psalm 37:23 RSV) I shall not have any desire to want anything else. Think about that for awhile. We are a culture of want. We are! We want the new gadget, or the new computer or iPhone. But when we are in Christ, God, our Father, provides everything to satisfy His desire for us. It’s His desire for us. The ultimate loving Father. He knows what’s best. He can provide the best. And He protects us from anything less than the best. “ For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV)
I love Psalm 23 in its entirety, but the very first verse establishes the incredible plan and love for those who call Jesus, Lord. Our Lord provides all that we can ever need. Our needs are determined by His great love and plan for us and are more that we can ever comprehend. “And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19 NKJV) The supply comes from the storehouses of God’s love, His grace, His mercy, His providence, His care, His Glory!!! Let me be transparent just for a minute. Sometimes there are very painful days in my life due to some health issues I am facing. Sometimes that pain is very severe and I’ve prayed, “Lord take my pain away even for a moment.” There’s nothing wrong with that prayer. Nothing at all. But recently, since meditating on this verse, I’ve found myself praying differently. I now pray, “Lord, I pray my life glorifies you. I’ll face whatever will give You glory.” I’ve learned what the Apostle Paul knew when he said, “And He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” (2 Corinthians 12:9 NKJV) You see, I need nothing else. I have my Lord and I shall not want.
Friend, as imperfect humans we will from time to time set our eyes upon the things of this world and maybe even make a “wish list”. I’ll tell you what I’m going to do when those thoughts come across my mind. I’m going to pray. I’m going to ask the Lord to show me what He desires for my life and go after that. Jesus is our shepherd and we know His voice and He will lead us as we follow Him.
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads 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 You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord Forever.
Precious Lord, thank You that You are my shepherd. I know Your voice. You provide for me according to Your riches. You guide me and direct me. My cup runs over. Forgive me Lord when I decide that my wants are my needs. Forgive me when I don’t submit everything into Your hands. I love You Lord and thank You that You establish my ways. I give You the glory in Jesus Name. AMEN
Don’t believe me, believe God!