Bible Reference: Psalm 23:4
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)
Bible Text: 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.
OBSERVATION: Psalm 23 is probably one of the best known, most often read psalms, but I wonder how often we stop to really meditate on the words of this wonderful Psalm of David. It is still very applicable to us today, especially in the words of verse 4. For we constantly stand in fear of something, or someone. Yet if we could only assume the confidence of David and talk to our Master about our concerns, and remind ourselves of His ever present help in our time of need, imagine how comforting that would be! Let’s look deeper into this today….
APPLICATION: Not sure if anyone lives without fear today, but in the world I know and experience, there’s a great fear factor in every aspect of life. Think about it friends, we arise each morning and check our surroundings to see if anyone came around during the night to break-in or steal anything. We head off to work and we are in super vigilant mode to make sure that other drivers on the road are being careful and will not hit us. We arrived at work and carefully survey the area before attempting to enter our place of business, for fear that someone might be lurking to follow us in. Throughout the day we are in fear of an armed robbery, or perhaps afraid that the boss might have a plant in our area reporting our activity to try and have us fired. OK, you are probably wondering why am I so paranoid, but hopefully you got my point and understand that we would have to be in a very desolate place or marooned on an island for us to possibly be free of fear in some way throughout our day. David had even greater reasons to fear, for he was chased and forced into battle on many occasions through his reign as king. But I want our key verse to remind us, just as David found, that regardless of what is going on around us, or no matter who might be out to get us, if we have Jesus we have everything. For He is a constant friend, who has no ulterior motives in loving us passionately and in spite of our failures. In another translation, 4b reads: ‘Your rod [to protect] and Your staff [to guide], they comfort and console me.’ Is it interesting how we tend to think of a rod as a punishment tool, yet with reference to the ‘rod’ we are told that God uses it to protect us and to guide us! How reassuring is that? When you feel like you know not where to turn next, or who to trust in seeking help with that, imagine and remember that we have an ultimate friend – a constant guide; One who sticks closer than a brother; One who knows what the future holds, and as we trust in Him, He will guide us through the circumstances that make up tomorrow. He’s my friend, and I hope and pray that you have also placed your faith and trust in Him. We are reassured of His endless love and His ongoing guidance right until the very end!
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for the reassurance that You will protect, guide and love us until the end of time. Please speak to those who fear about things in this life, convince them of Your power and Your desire to guide us through all aspects of this life. Lord speak to the hearts of those who are hopeless, because they don’t know You personally. May this be the day of decision for them. AMEN!