Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want (PS 23.1).
A great spiritual principle is that it’s not what you know but WHO you know.
Years ago my daughter moved to Philadelphia for an internship, and a friend of mine and his wife graciously offered for her to live with them. I couldn’t foresee all my daughter would encounter there, but I knew my friend and his wife. I know their wise, kind and generous character. When my daughter was there, they did everything from helping her with her car to getting her a mattress, and running her to the emergency room. I didn’t need to know all the “whats” – only the “who” – my friend and his wife.
Similarly, we don’t need to know all the “whats” we’ll face in life – only one “Who” – Jesus, our Shepherd.
God compares his people to sheep. In ancient Palestine sheep “were totally dependent on shepherds for protection, grazing, watering, shelter and tending to injuries. In fact, sheep would not survive long without a shepherd. Sheep are not only dependent creatures; they are also singularly unintelligent, prone to wandering and unable to find their way to a sheepfold even when it is within sight”(Dictionary of Biblical Imagery). How we need a shepherd!
“In the word shepherd, David uses the most…intimate metaphor yet encountered in the Psalms, more intimate than ‘king’ or ‘deliverer’…’rock’ or ‘shield’…the shepherd lives with his flock and is everything to it: guide, physician and protector.” — Derek Kidner
See the intimate care Jesus exercises over his flock:
He will tend his flock like a shepherd;
he will gather the lambs in his arms;
he will carry them in his bosom,
and gently lead those that are with young. (Isaiah 40.11)
What a picture of God’s intimate care for us! Tending us, gathering us up in his arms and carrying us close to himself, gently leading us.
Isn’t it incredible that the Sovereign God of the universe would take upon himself the role of being the Shepherd of us singularly unintelligent, prone to wander, weak and helpless sheep?
Don’t worry about the “whats” of your life. It’s not what you know but who you know. Rejoice if you know Jesus, the good shepherd, who tenderly cares for you.
Photo by sarean.com
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